After the Crash – Michel Bussi: A Review

Date finished: May 31st 2016

I’ve got a bit of an appetite for thrillers at the moment, so I thought I’d tackle this one that’s been lying in wait on my shelves since about October.

003In December 1980, a plane crashes into a mountain on the Franco-Swiss border. All the passengers are killed instantly, except for one baby girl who miraculously survives. Two families come forward to claim her: the rich, influential de Carvilles, and the working class Vitrals. Which family does she belong to? Eighteen years later, the detective who has dedicated his life to investigating the case makes an important discovery. One that will change everything…

There’s no doubting Bussi’s ability as a writer. He writes with precise, flowing prose; jumping between past and present and different characters with a simple ease that other writers sometimes lack. He’s also a master of misdirection. Countless times he lays the groundwork for another theory you can meditate on, before smashing it and laying another one.

After the Crash is an expertly-plotted, tightly-paced mystery with a surprising amount of heart. When so many thrillers and crime novels are about murder, it’s refreshing to find one that wants to investigate life, not death (that’s not to say there aren’t a few life-threatening situations to get the blood pumping). That’s not to say it’s perfect – some parts are a tad predictable, and there’s a bit of playing for time going on – but when it’s this enjoyably written such shortcomings can be forgiven.

This is a short review, but I always think that’s a compliment for a thriller. There’s so many twists and turns and so much to enjoy in After the Crash that you don’t want to give anything away for risk of ruining anything to a potential reader. All I can say is: dive in. We’ll see you when you surface because – and I can tell you this much – once you’ve picked this clever, likable thriller up, you won’t put it down until it’s finished.




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