Salvation of a Saint Reviewed
Salvation of a Saint is an intriguing title until you reach almost the very end of the novel. As usual Keigo Higashino has churned out an excellent story weaving human emotions, the perfect crime & justice being served at the end. The enigma in his novels is never the who dunnit question. It is always the how that leaves you almost frustrated.
Ayane Mita is a noted traditional patchwork designer & wife of the successful businessman Yoshitaka Mashiba. Theirs is the perfect marriage, with Ayane fulfilling the duties of a devoted wife & Yoshitaka a noble husband. That’s what it seems on the surface. The very first chapter tells you who the killer is & why they are forced to take such a step. But will they be ever caught?
Ayane is by all terms a gracious lady. The prefect looks, the creativity in her designs & her love for her husband, make her a woman any man would be happy to keep. But not Yoshitaka. For Yoshitaka, children are what complete a family & a marriage without any is futile. So when it’s almost their anniversary & with no kids in waiting, he decides it’s time to move ahead. Ayane isn’t ready for this imminent fate & we end up with the detective Kusanagi investigating the murder of Mr.Yoshitaka Mashiba.
The suspects are just two. The wife, who is known for her devotion & also has a strong alibi and the mistress-Hiromi Wakayama, also the favourite apprentice of Ayane. To add to the woes, Kusanagi can’t help admire the beauty of the talented widow. Will that make him prejudiced? Will it blind him to the obvious evidence? And the new recruit on the team, Utsumi is all set to crackdown on the widow. There is tension in the air. Utsumi bent upon finding evidence against Ayane seeks the help of the physicist Yukowa much to the displeasure of Kusanagi. With the entry of Yukowa things get interesting & the novel begins to pick pace.
I found Salvation of a Saint quite enjoyable but The Devotion of Suspect X still remains my favourite. Keigo Higashino excels at creating the scene for the perfect crime, one that seems almost impossible to execute, bordering on the brinks of the ridiculous & the fantastic. The characters are well developed & you tend to empathize with them as you read on. I felt that the murder was almost justified & have nothing but respect for the murder!
Salvation of a Saint is great book & I highly recommend it to lovers of mystery & crime themed novels. The climax & actual revelation almost makes up for the slow pace in the middle of the book. The last few pages are a source of pure delight & like me you’d probably be left shaking your head murmuring ‘no way!’