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Thrilling Salvation : Reviewing Salvation of a Saint by Keigo Higashino

What if all you have to do to commit a murder is to be absent from the place of murder? 
Just not be present at the scene of the murder at the time of the murder, and voila, the murder is performed by you. That's gonna be some murder, yes? Hell yes.

Keigo Higashino is the master of the impossible murders/crimes. In the Salvation of a Saint, the bestseller author of The Devotion of Suspect X offers the readers another impossible murder to fry their brains over. The Devotion of Suspect X has already been labelled the Japanese Thriller Phenomenon. I was lucky to do a review of the book for blogadda sometime back. You can glance at the review here

In his latest book, we have another impossible situation. The husband is killed. The wife is away at her parents home. The lady, with whom the husband is having an affair, has visited him the night before, but was not in the house at the time of the murder. The neighbors has not seen anyone going into the house. So, who murdered the husband? It is an ultimate locked room mystery

If the mystery was not potent enough, the main police detective on the case, our old friend Kusanagi seems to have developed some soft emotions for the wife of the deceased, one of the primary suspect. Will he be objective enough to see the proofs that  goes against the wife? Or maybe he is right? Someone else is behind it all. But it finally falls on the series hero, Yukawa - the Detective Galileo - to bare the impossible truth.

You really want to know what is the most maddening aspect of this crime? It won't help the police even if they know who murdered the person unless they know how he was murdered, but even knowing how he was murdered is not enough, because it is next to impossible to prove that that is how he was murdered. Can Detective Galileo do the impossible again? You must read it to know. And just to give you a heads up: the motive of the murder is not as simple as it appears at first. 

In both his books, Higashino has created victims that the reader does not really sympathize with. They were both people who deserved to be murdered. I, as a reader, was not running through the book looking for some justice to be served out. I was only driven by the desire to know how the impossible was pulled off. 

Higashino, unlike most thriller writers, creates strong, well-rounded characters that stays with the readers long after the last page is turned. Both the wife and the lover are unforgettable. You may even feel a strong bond with them, so much so that you start wishing they may not be found out as the killer in the end.

There cannot be two opinions that it is an awesome read and I loved reading it. Still, there is something that is below par. The language in some instances is not correct. For example, on Page 72, you come across this: Mr Mashiba didn't answer the phone, so you went to his house - any adjustments that need making there? There are few other instances. Maybe this is because of a literal translation of a Japanese book. I don't know. But it certainly creates an odd feeling in an otherwise delicious reading experience.

After reading the Salvation of a Saint, I ardently hope that the first two books of this series gets translated and published very soon.

I am sure the first time you will be reading the book in a breakneck speed. But the next time, if you read it, read it at leisure, it will definitely taste even better, just like slowly brewed coffee.

After reading the book, whenever you are in your kitchen, will you be watching your tap a little warily? Maybe.

Author- Keigo Higashino
Price- Rs 350/-
Publisher- Hachette India 

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!

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