Sunday, October 5, 2008

Noir-Oliver Pauvert

Oliver Pauvert
Counterpoint, Dec 2008, $14.95
ISBN: 9781582434476

In 2019 France, he is arrested when he is found by the body of a murder victim. The transport crashes leaving him dazed and frightened to wander the streets of Paris wondering who he is and did he do what the only seeming memory he has. Could he be a murderer as his only vision is that of a brutalized woman's corpse?

He manages to get home, but his wife fears him and worse when he looks in a mirror he fails to recognize the image looking back. No one seems to want to help him; in fact they prefer to turn him over to the cops. The secret police of the ruling French National party search for him even as he learns he has a dark power to stare into someone’s eyes until they die. African immigrants take him to the outlawed Noir who help him obtain the truth behind the woman’s murder and give him a reason to live: kill the leader of the French National Party.

This grim dark near futuristic thriller modernizes melds and extrapolates 1984 with THE STRANGER into a dystopian 2019. The nameless lead character struggles for understanding in a society totally owned by the party through the use of electronic gizmos and drug control of its citizens. Readers who appreciate a forbidding gloomy suspense saga will appreciate the cat and mouse French morality tale in which fascism rules.

Harriet Klausner