Incorruptible review – Barbara Nadel

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In Incorruptible, Nadel once again seamlessly blends facts from recent Turkish current events and its historical past into the fictional world of Inspector Ikmen. She goes into enough detail about the multicultural make up of Turkish society to draw the reader in, but not so much that it becomes a dull history lesson. One of reasons Istanbul fascinates is the way history is present on every street corner and feels vibrant and alive, and Nadel captures this well.

The body of a young woman is found dumped in a backstreet of Istanbul, in an area usually frequented by pimps, prostitutes and punters. Her mutilated body has been tenderly covered in flowers. However as Ikmen well knows, appearances can be deceiving. The dead woman comes from a Christian family and is believed to be the messenger of the Virgin Mary. Her apparent cure from cancer has been proclaimed a miracle and made her infamous. Islamic believers are outraged by her claims, as are certain members of the small network of Istanbul Christian communities still in existence.

Numerous suspects present themselves but the more Inspector Ikmen probes, the more possibilities he reveals. At first extremist Islamic groups seem the obvious choice, but then it looks as though someone from the girl’s own family is to blame. Nadel masterfully touches on incest, unfulfilled lives, interfaith relationships, the role of confession in the church and as always, the darker side of human nature, to deliver a gripping and thoroughly believable thriller.

Don’t wait to find out who dunnit? – get your copy here and start reading right away.

Title: Incorruptible
Publisher: Headline Publishing
Date: 19 February 2019
ISBN: 9781472234698

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