Adam Colclough lives and works in the West Midlands, he writes regularly for a number of websites, one day he will get round to writing a book for someone else to review.
The discovery of a skeleton on a building site in the Polish city of Olsztyn seems, at first to point towards an incident in the country's violent recent past. Then tests prove the bones to be fresh and to have been chemically cleaned. The case prosecutor Teodor Szacki uncovers a link to other cases where domestic abusers have been subjected to a violent form of justice. As his investigation progresses Szacki's own family comes under threat, forcing him to make a choice that will change his life forever.
For years Scandinavian noir has been the benchmark for bleakness in crime fiction, in this, his third novel featuring Teodor Szacki Miloszewski makes a convincing case for Eastern Europe presenting a serious challenge to be the next big thing.
The setting is gloomily provincial, like small towns the world over Olsztyn has chaotic traffic management, hideous public buildings and an absurd pride in the one thing that makes it distinctive, in this case having eleven lakes within the city boundary. It is presented as the sort of place where resentments fester between narrow horizons.
Add to this a deep seated suspicion of authority and a habit of looking the other way on the part of the local populace and you have the an ideal environment in which wrongs can go unpunished and taking the law into your own hands looks like the only means of redress.
In Szacki Miloszewski has created a central character who by turns, is both brilliant and troubled, an outsider ripe to be hoisted on the petard of his own metropolitan superiority.
Throughout the tone is sombre and the book has a serious underlying message about the way the perpetrators of domestic violence are able to hide in plain sight with the help of a society that doesn't want to get involved.
This may be the last outing for Teodor Szacki, but it is not, hopefully, the last of Zygmunt Miloszewski's dark and well-crafted crime novels to be translated into English.