Review: Seven Days, by Deon Meyer


Esta entrada es bilingüe. Desplazarse hacia abajo para ver la versión en castellano.

Atlantic Monthly Press, 2012. Originally published in Afrikaans in 2011 as 7 Dae. Translated by K. L. Seegers. 352 pages. ISBN: 978-0-8021-2035-9

Forty days before, Hanneke Sloet, an ambitious young lawyer, was found stabbed to death in her luxury Cape Town apartment. The case was closed for lack of evidence, but an anonymous email arrived this morning. The sender claims that the police are covering up the murderer and threatens to shoot a policeman in the leg. He/she will continue to do so until the Sloet case is solved, but his next shot won’t be in the leg. That same night a policeman is shot by a sniper in the leg.

Homicide detective Bennie Griessel, whom Deon Meyer’s readers have met before in Devil’s Peak and in Thirteen Hours (my reviews can be found clicking on the title) has been called to lead the reopened investigation of the Sloet case, and Captain Mbeli Kaleni (see also the previous titles) will be in charge of hunting down the sniper. Griessel must look at the investigation with fresh eyes even though it was done by the book. “The forensics were good, the footwork was thorough, they talked to everyone who lived and breathed, there’s no motive that stands up to scrutiny.” But, will he be able to find out what happened and remain sober before it’s too late?

It’s worth stating that for me Deon Meyer is one of the most interesting crime fiction writers that can be found now-a-days. One of the few authors whose books I hasten to buy as soon as they are released. He has never disappointed me, and this book is no exception. The story is pretty much straightforward. With very few clues, the investigation develops at a relatively slow pace but finally everything falls into place and the excellent dialogues bring us closer to a reality as complex and interesting as that of South Africa. All in all, a worthwhile read.

My rating: 4/5.  

7 Days has been reviewed by Maxine at Euro Crime, Sarah at Crimepieces, Norman at Crime Scraps Review, Glenn at International Noir Fiction, M.A.Orthofer at The Complete Review, Chris Roberts at Reviewing the Evidence,


Siete días, de Deon Meyer

Cuarenta días antes Hanneke Sloet, una abogada joven y ambiciosa, fue encontrada muerta de una puñalada en su apartamento de lujo de Ciudad del Cabo. El caso se cerró por falta de pruebas, pero un correo electrónico anónimo llegó esta mañana. El remitente afirma que la policía está encubriendo al asesino y amenaza con disparar a un policía en la pierna. Él/ella continuará haciéndolo hasta que se solucione el caso Sloet, pero el siguiente disparo no será en la pierna. Esa misma noche, un policía recibe un tiro en la pierna de un francotirador.

El investigador Bennie Griessel, a quien los lectores de Deon Meyer han encontrado antes en El pico del diablo y en Trece horas (mis reseñas pueden verlas haciendo clic en el título) ha sido llamado para dirigir la reapertura de la investigación del caso Sloet, y la capitán Mbeli Kaleni (véase también los títulos anteriores) será la responsable de perseguir al francotirador. Griessel debe examinar la investigación con nuevos ojos a pesar de que ésta se llevó a cabo correctamente. “Los forenses eran buenos, el trabajo básico fue minucioso, hablaron con todo el que vivía y respiraba, no existe ningún motivo que pueda sostenerse en pie.” Pero, ¿Será capaz de averiguar lo sucedido y permanecer sobrio antes de que sea demasiado tarde?

Conviene precisar que para mí Deon Meyer es uno de los escritores de novela negra más interesantes que se pueden encontrar en la actualidad. Uno de los pocos autores cuyos libros me apresuro a comprar tan pronto como son publicados. Nunca me ha decepcionado, y este libro no es una excepción. La historia es bastante sencilla. Con muy pocas pistas, la investigación se desarrolla a un ritmo relativamente lento, pero finalmente todo encaja en su sitio y los excelentes diálogos nos acercan a una realidad tan compleja e interesante como la de Sudáfrica. En definitiva, una lectura muy recomendable.

Mi valoración: 4/5.

10 thoughts on “Review: Seven Days, by Deon Meyer

  1. José Ignacio – I see have much to look forward to with this one. That’s very good to know. I like Deon Meyer’s work very much and this is one I have been promising myself to read for quite some time. Thanks for the additional motivation. 🙂

  2. Jose Ignacio: I equally enjoyed the book. Unlike our joint opinion of the ending to The Black Box I thought Seven Days had a strong ending.

    1. Bill, it certainly is. It has remind me of a similar ending in a Spanish criem fiction book. But I won’t tell you the name if you have not read it.

  3. Thanks to my post Jose. I enjpyed this book, perhaps not as much as ‘Trackers’ but I thought that it was an interesting story and the character of the dead woman came alive on the page.

    1. Sarah, Trackers is so far my favourite Deon Meyer’s book. Fully agree with you about the character of the dead woman caming alive in the story.

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