Title: Stasi Child
Author: David Young
Page Count/Review Word Count: 410
Disclaimer: While I aim to be unbiased, I received a copy of this for free to review.
I have a lot of love for Stasi Child – If I understand correctly, it was the author’s debut, yet you wouldn’t know it. Meticulously researched and incredibly well-written, it comes recommended from me – even more impressive is the fact that I was given an uncorrected proof copy, and I still didn’t spot any obvious mistakes.
So, let’s take a look at the story-line – loosely speaking, it follows detective Karen Muller as she investigates the death of a young girl, who’s found apparently fleeing from West Germany to East Germany, with bullets indicating she’d been shot by the West. But not everything is as it seems, and so Karen is tasked with investigating, despite the fact that higher-ups within the Stasi might be implicated.
At this point, I should probably also mention that the book is set in East Berlin in 1974, and so you’re in for a Cold War murder mystery thriller that’s like nothing I’ve ever read before. In some ways, it’s almost historical fiction, and that’s a good thing – I don’t know too much about what happened to Germany after the end of the Second World War, and so I felt like I was learning whilst still being entertained by a tightly-knit tale of espionage and intrigue.
The characterisation is great here, and it’s one of those rare books where characters and plot come together perfectly, complementing each other to make a book that’s one of a kind. I say that, although I’m pretty sure that Young is planning to continue the series – I look forward to the day when Karin Muller is, if not a household name, at least one that’s reasonably well-known. Stasi Child was a promising start, and I look forward to reading more of Young’s work in the future.
Stasi Child is also a launch title for Twenty7 Books, a brand new imprint of Bonnier Publishing Fiction. If it’s any indication of the quality of the books that they’ll be putting out, then this is definitely a press to keep an eye on, and to submit to if you think you’re good enough. Here’s hoping that they have more books like Stasi Child up their sleeves – if they do, I’ll be first in line to review them for sure.