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I first came upon The Devotion of Suspect X at the Crossword bookstore in Garuda Mall. I was intrigued by the tagline on the cover. "The Japanese Stieg Larsson" read the blurb from The Times.
The last time I found a thriller "unputdownable" was a few years ago when I raced through Johnny Gone Down, by Karan Bajaj. Now I had found a worthy successor.
I returned Suspect X to Just Books after I was done but I wanted more people to read it, so I ordered a copy from Flipkart. My wife is reading it now — she is thoroughly captivated — and afterwards I'm going to place it in the Commits library so that my students can enjoy reading it.
I guarantee even non-readers will love this one.
- UPDATE: My young friend in the US, Ankita Maurya, wrote to say she doesn't really like the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series. "Is this still a good book, even with the comparison with Larsson?" she wanted to know.
"Ironically, Ankita," I replied, "this book is nothing like Larsson's books; that is why I found that Times blurb a bit of a mystery. I think what the reviewer meant was this book also is a cult favourite and a bestseller, just like the The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and the sequels. Go ahead and pick up Suspect X — you'll love it."
- UPDATE (August 8, 2012): From the latest issue of Open: "At last, there is someone to satisfy an Agatha Christie aficionado’s longing for old school whodunits — Japanese author Keigo Higashino".
- UPDATE (March 18, 2013): Today, at breakfast, I began reading Salvation of a Saint, Higashino's follow-up to The Devotion of Suspect X. Now I can't wait to get home from work and be done with my gym workout so that I can sit down again with Salvation of a Saint.
- UPDATE (January 18, 2015): Salvation of a Saint, featuring two of the main characters in Suspect X, turned out to be a page-turner too. So when another of my young friends, the Toronto-based Nasatassia Michael, told me that one more Higashino mystery had just been published in English, I immediately pre-ordered the book, Malice, on Amazon. I am glad to report that I was wowed by Malice. Once again, almost from the beginning, we know who has been murdered and by whom. And once again we keep turning the pages breathlessly, this time to try to learn why. With every Higashino book I read, my admiration for his writing skills grows exponentially. How on earth does he do it?