cover image Treachery in the Yard: A Nigerian Thriller

Treachery in the Yard: A Nigerian Thriller

Adimchinma Ibe, Minotaur, $22.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-312-58593-8

Ibe's disappointing debut, a crime thriller set in Nigeria, introduces homicide detective Tamunoemi Peterside. When a bomb destroys the garage and most of the home of wealthy Pius Okpara, a candidate for governor of Rivers State in the midst of a heated political race, Okpara is not seriously injured, but a state judge's wife, who may have witnessed the bombers get away, soon ends up murdered. The body count rises at an alarming, almost farcical rate as Peterside's superiors oppose him in his efforts to find the truth. Ibe falls short of making a society unfamiliar to most Western readers vibrant, offering instead a superficial picture of corruption and violence. Peterside is constantly taken aback as witness after witness is bumped off, while the bad guys' convenient confessions come across as staged ("Is this a bad movie, where everything is summed up at the end?" one villain tells Peterside). Hopefully, the detective will show more savvy in the promised sequel. (Aug.)