Friday, May 17, 2013

Review: The Russian Donation

The Russian Donation
The Russian Donation by Christoph Spielberg

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Book Info: Genre: Medical Mystery
Reading Level: Adult
Recommended for: Those who like financially based crimes
Trigger Warnings: murder, suicide, physical assault (man on woman)

My Thoughts: In a seemingly International series of books, I've moved from Iceland to Germany in this next mystery on my shelf. (I've also been listening to a Russian singer, and a Japanese heavy metal band, so it's International Week here in the Sozaeva household...)

I was incredibly amused by the way Dr. Hoffman kept comparing the COO, Bredow, to Hitler. It kept making me giggle at inappropriate times. There were a few other places that were pretty funny, too, but mostly short, one-offs rather than more intensive sections.

I was aggravated by the author's (or possibly the translater's) constant misuse of “comprised.” It was consistently written as “comprised of...” when that should be “composed of.” Comprised is not used with of. For instance: Twelve items comprise a dozen. vs. A dozen is composed of twelve items.

Anyway, overall I didn't much care for this book. I did finish it, but I found it overly complex, with way too much musing, not enough character development or plot, and generally just not to my taste. All the financial aspects just made my eyes glaze over, and generally I wouldn't recommend this to anyone other than someone who is absolutely fascinated in financial crime and following the money trail. Attempts to throw in the Russian mafia were subverted by making them way more civilized than they normally are. No, I won't be continuing this series despite it's acclaim elsewhere.

Disclosure: I received an ARC paperback from Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Synopsis: Doctor Felix Hoffmann is a seasoned physician at a Berlin hospital, respected by colleagues and devoted to his intelligent girlfriend, Celine. It's a life filled with medical work, televised soccer games, and the chill of German beer. And when a former patient shows up dead by causes unknown, curiosity and sheer medical devotion propel Hoffmann to investigate. But his autopsy order goes unfulfilled as the body is cremated and hospital records vanish. Soon, Hoffmann discovers a diagnosis of conspiratorial proportions, and he must risk everything to save not only himself but the hospital he's always loved.

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