Iepriekš biju lasījis divas citas šī autora grāmatas, abas man bija patikušas. Diemžēl ne vienmēr trīs lietas ir labas, un arī šoreiz ar trešo lasīto romānu Jākobs Arjuni lika man vilties. Šī grāmata ir diezgan tipisks krimiķis/trilleris, kuru vada Ajuni populārākais literārais varonis privātdetektīvs Kemals Kayankaya, par kuru, atbilstoši Wikipedia, Arjuni līdz šim uzrakstījis četrus romānus. Grāmatas mezglu veido kāda pazudusi jauna taizemiete, kuru viņas vācu bojfrends izpircis no bordeļa, kurā viņa līdz šim strādāja. Taču taizemietei nebija papīru, lai likumīgi uzturētos Vācijā, tālab šiem nācās samaksāt kaut kādam dokumentu viltotājam, kas tajā vietā, lai iedotu papīrus, nolaupījis pašu sievieti. Nezinot labāku risinājumu šajā situācijā, cietušais vīrietis dodas pie privātdetektīva Kayankaya`s cerībā, ka tas viņam varēs līdzēt. Pamazām atklājas, ka pazudušās sievietes gadījums nemaz nav unikāls, bet gan daļa no lielāka cilvēku apčakarēšanas tīkla, pret kuru laikam jau principiālu iebildumu nav ari policijai, jo kam gan tai vajadzīgi nelegālie imigranti.
Amazing isn`t it - to read a book that has been written buy a person only less than ten years older than you (if you`re 20 and not 65 that is). And Arjouni is just the guy. It seems that he`s mainly writting some detective crap, but this book can wisely balance on the right side of the mud puddle where such authors occasionally fall. The title story "A friend", for example, is a beautiful tale about a hitchhiker who gets a ride from a theatre director who needs a person to immitate being his friend for a weekend. It turns out that Archie (that`s his name) isn`t the only acting person at the party, and even when he believes that he actually has achieved some sort of friendship with his supposed friend (I don`t mean "friend" in the sexual way), it`s nothing but acting in the reality. The story "The inner" is a strange tale how a man is taken hostage at a bank robbery and he develops the so called Stockholm syndrom in him but still kills the bank robber in the end. And there`s another nice story about a family that illegally keeps an undertendant from abroad and gets awarded for it, despite how bad they treat him. And "In peace" tells the story of a rich city guy starting a country life. But the two other stories are not that good - "The Black series" is the usual gangster stuff we get in the second hand literature nowadays, while "Visit of the pope" makes no sense. If there had been only the four best stories it would have been a great book, but so it is just ok.
When you take a book from a library just by looking at the cover and the size of the book you can never know whether it`s gonna be any good. On one hand you can accidentally jump into some novel that even Joyce would have considered a masterpiece but you can also find yourself in posession of a complete waste of your time. Jakob Arjouni luckily or luck-killy if you like it better that way proved to be a decent writer. He doesn`t aim too high - what he gives the reader in his novel is just some days in the life of a schoolteacher who had some great plans for the weekend but in the end he must face his son in coma, his daughter suspecting him for being a pervert, his wife has been in a mental hospital for quite a while already but now he`s also very close to losing his job. Oh, his car is crashed, his face is damaged after his son attacked him, a middle age woman called him a stinky anti-semite on the phone and he`s found out that he`s gay. No, the last thing isn`t really true. I just made it up so it would be even prettier than it already was. Anyhow, the book starts with a lesson at school where Joachim Linde (that`s the hero) asks his students to utter how the deeds of nazi-Germany affect the Germany of today. The discussion goes extremely wrong when a girl starts naming some boy`s parents nazis and the boy utters how sad it is that the girls grandparents hadn`t been gased in a concentration camp. And after that everything that hadn`t gone wrong already goes wrong after all. What this book lacked in my opinion was a bit of uncertainity - I would like to have my doubts about how clear Linde`s conscience was, but the author didn`t provide enough of that. A good book still.