The Long, Long Afternoon by Inga Vesper

  • Published: 2021 Genre: Crime & mystery 1. First lines. 2. Cover: Allen and Unwin 3. Red geraniums [Public Domain] via Public Domain Pictures 4. Man and woman profile [Public Domain] via All free domwload
  • Joyce Haney lives a seemingly happy life with husband Frank and two young children in the suburbs of a fictional Californian town in 1959. One day, when her housekeeper Ruby arrives for work she discovers a blood-spattered kitchen, and no sign of Joyce. Detective Mick Blanke investigates.

    “There is hope in the morning hours, just as there is desperation in the afternoon, which stretches like gum and yet contracts into nothing, once it is filled with laundry and dusting and dinner and the children running around, always at risk of falling into the pool..”

    The Long, Long Afternoon, Inga Vesper

    Glanceabook: This started off really well. The premise was intriguing, with questions and problems left hanging to entice the reader on. The characters were realistic but I didn’t believe in a few of the relationships – how two people could actually care about each other because of the way they were portrayed. Still, the plot moved along quickly, keeping the reader interested, and the mystery was resolved satisfactorily.

    Evening Standard: “Beyond the fabulously kitsch technicolour setting of the gleaming lawns, roadside motels, and purring silver Pontiacs, German-born journalist Inga Vesper has captured the flavour of the casual sexism and racism of the times with a perfectly-judged touch.”

    Readings: “This book is suffused with the heat of a Californian summer and the oppressive nature of the fifties – the misogyny, racism, upheaval and violence of it all – and it rings true to the time and place with every single enthralling page.”

    Quotes:

    “The kitchen in this house is the only thing in this house that’s out of whack. Brutally so. Mick stands in the doorway and takes his time memorizing the scene. There is blood on the floor.”

    “It was not my fault. It was not my fault alone.

    Author: Inga Vesper

    Book trailer. Source: Allen and Unwin facebook.

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