Review : Newcomer by Keigo Higashino

Plot Summary ( from Goodreads ) :

Detective Kyoichiro Kaga of the Tokyo Police Department has just been transferred to a new precinct in the Nihonbashi area of Tokyo . Newly arrived , but with a great deal of experience , Kaga is promptly assigned to the team investigating the murder of a woman . But the more he investigates , the greater number of potential suspects emerges. It isn’t long before it seems nearly all the people living and working in the business district of Nihonbashi have a motive for murder . To prevent the murderer from eluding justice , Kaga must unravel all the secrets surrounding a complicated life . Buried somewhere in the woman’s past , in her family history , and the last few days of her life is the clue that will lead to the murderer .

From the international bestseller Keigo Higashino , author of The Devotion of Suspect X , comes one of his finest works of crime fiction yet .

My thoughts on the book :

This is my first Keigo Higashino . I love it when the post – Sherlock fictional detectives try to break off from the cerebral & egotistic tendencies which seem to have become a must have to qualify as an astute detective . Still I was not prepared for someone like Kaga . Some five pages into the book , the man is seen sitting in a coffee shop calmly explaining the logic behind his deductions to a young woman who he had interviewed the previous day to verify the alibi of one of the suspects . I seriously began to question the motives of this guy . But as I turned the pages , Kaga ‘ s detective capabilities spoke better than any of the signature battlecry which ( coming to think of it now ) seems to be yet another must have for several of these fictional detectives . . .

Another aspect which I loved about the book was the short chapters where Kaga solves domestic puzzles which are more like everyday questions which might intrigue Miss Marple . He is not the super detective who creates a huge stir on his entrance – his interactions & investigations are too low key that he almost becomes yet another one in the host of characters ( !!! ) . There are no dramatic denouements or Holmesian / Herculean style dramatics with the discovery of some significant clue and yet Keigo manages to keep the reader turning the pages fast with yet another piece of the puzzle falling into place at the end of every section . In short , Kaga might be a wonder in the detective universe . . .

It goes without saying that any read which gives a peep into the traditions & culture of a country is always enjoyable . You can pick up this gem if you want a suspense read for you next Japanese literature readathon . I would be definitely be checking out Keigo ‘ s other titles . . .

Rating : 5 / 5

If you have already read The Newcomer , let me know in the comments section about your thoughts on the book  . . . If you have any interesting recommendations , please do share them . Until the next review then . . .

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