- Title – The Devotion of Suspect X
- Author – Keigo Higashino
- Publisher – Hachette India
- Genre – Crime Fiction
- Pages – 374
- ISBN – 9780349138732
Yasuko, a single mother, lives a quiet life with her daughter Misato. She works at the Tokyo Bento shop. One fine day, her ex-husband appears at her doorstep, unexpected, to extort money from her and brings about chaos, confusion and fear in her rather comfortable life.
When detective Kusanagi from Tokyo Police investigates the events of that evening, he is confronted with the clues leading to one of the most puzzling, mysterious circumstances that require a genius to make sense. The idea of creating an unsolvable mystery and the difficulty of finding a solution to it makes the whole plot thrilling.
Despite a series of investigations, none of the clues make sense and the police are seen struggling to solve the case. A page turning story that’ll keep you on your tenterhooks and just when you’ll feel you could see through it all, the ending will surprise you.
A book that has a fast pace, crisp descriptions and the words spin webs of eerie and brilliance with each sentence. I was so engrossed in reading the book that putting it down was almost impossible. Having said that, I read the book in one day flat.
I thoroughly enjoyed the brilliant logic used behind every action and the natural pace at which the story unfolds without too many dramatic turns. The fun part is, the dots are linked with the help of theorems and formulas used in mathematics and physics that adds to the charm of the book.
Though I did feel exhausted at the end of the read for the wonderful narration makes you actually dwell, walk and even think like the characters in the story. A wonderful break from routine crime plots, where the suspect(s) and the detectives are busy out-maneuvering and out-thinking each other.
Reflecting on the shortcomings of the novel, I felt that the detectives solving the case could actually come with a few findings that could be known only if you were involved in the conspiracy. But fiction writing definitely gives the writer the liberty to make a few unexplainable plunges without raising a conflict.
In a book that never fails to impress with the kind of homework and deep thought each character puts to each of his/her actions, the protagonist Yasuko’s character emerges as an ever-confused, submissive, easily trusting people kind of lady who at times comes forward as an opportunist, though she does make up for all those weaknesses in the end.
Besides, the hasty way in which what happened with Yasuko’s daughter was left for readers to imagine, could have been better sorted.
I highly recommend the book to those who enjoy a lot of logic peppered in a crime fiction read. Though the book has 374 pages, but the easy to read presentation makes it a quick read that’s surely going to leave a lasting memory.