Ce roman fait suite à l'excellent "Case Histories" que j'ai beaucoup aimé où on fait la connaissance de l'attachant ancien policier Jackson Brodie . J'ai découvert par la même occasion le style unique de Kate Atkinson, son humour désinvolte et souvent noir. Ici l'auteure utilise les mêmes procédés -- histoires à première vue sans rapport entre elles et qui finissent par s'emboîter les unes dans les autres. D'ailleurs, cette image de poupées russes devient un peu trop récurrente pour être vraiment efficace. Même remarque pour l'humour noir -- par moment on se sent mal à l'aise. Je crois que c'est beaucoup une question de dosage. Ce livre avait besoin, à mon avis, d'une mise au point avec l'éditeur. J'ai constaté un "recyclage" d'images et d'anecdotes d'un roman à l'autre. On peut prendre d'autres auteurs, et non les moindres, également "en flagrant délit" mais il faudrait que Ms. Atkinson reste vigilante. Pour conclure, comme j'ai dit plus haut j'ai préféré "Case Histories" et surtout "Behind the Scenes at the Museum" , un très beau roman qui explore le thème "notre musée à nous qui est notre passé".
Kate Atkinson à un talent donner, avec compassion, les vies vraies à ses caractères dysfonctionnels. Au même temps elle écrire les bonnes romans à énigmes. Je suis toujours triste quand je tourne la dernière page.
Don't know how I'd managed to miss Kate Atkinson - but I've now made up for lost time. Great writing, great character development and great mystery. I'm a 'good' crime/police buff and am happy to now have another writer in my list of favourites along with Mark Billingham, Ian Rankin, John Hart and Karin Slaughter.
Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
50 internautes sur 55 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
As The Saying Goes.....26 décembre 2006
- Publié sur Amazon.com
As the old saying goes 'One Good Turn Deserves Another' and in this case someone observes an attack, saves the life of the attackee and trouble comes in spades. Kate Atkinson re-introduces us to Jackson Brodie, whom we first met in 'Case Histories'. He has inherited 2 million pounds, has quit his job, but it seems his job has not quit him. Along with him comes Julia, whom we also met in 'Case Histories'. Both have a murdered sibling in common, and they have become lovers. Julia divulges very little- she is a clam- while we come to know Jackson a bit better.
Into this mix comes varied and sundry characters- all well described and more than interesting, and all well vested in this story. All of these people are hiding something, all looking for something, and all are integral to the whole. All are inter-connected as the story develops, and we are left to ponder their interests.
Paul Bradley- the victim who was attacked
Martin, a mystery writer who is thrust into a series of real-life crimes.
Jackson, whom we have met before; a former police officer who finds and loses the body of a young girl, then stumbles into several other violent events.
Louise, a senior police officer, who doesn't believe all of Jackson's explanation, but finds him very interesting.
Gloria, the wife of a home builder, who "often felt that her life was a series of rooms that she walked in to when everyone else had just left."
Honda Man- the attacker- not of one but many of these characters
JoJo- the Russian who seems to materialize suddenly
When 'Paul Bradley' is rear-ended by a Honda driver who gets out and bashes Bradley unconscious with a baseball bat, Jackson is a reluctant witness. Other bystanders include crime novelist Martin Canning, and tart-tongued Gloria Hatter, who's plotting to end her 39-year marriage to a shady real estate developer. Jackson walks away from the incident, but keeps running into trouble, including a dead body that only he can see, the Honda man and tight-lipped inspector Louise Monroe. Everyone has a secret infidelity, unprofessional behavior, murder, which adds depth to this story. After Martin misses a visit from the Honda man, he enlists Jackson as a bodyguard, pulling the characters into an orbit before they collide on Gloria Hatter's lawn. Along the way, pieces of plot fall through the cracks and the final event unfolds. The characters are absorbing and Kate Atkinson has offered us another superb story. 'One Good Turn', in my opinion, is the most intriguing book thus far.
"Despite Atkinson's promise of "boxes within boxes, dolls within dolls, worlds within worlds", the finale, when the cast are maneuvered together for a violent climax and the inevitable expostulations of "You? Here? Why?" The pleasure of One Good Turn lies in the ride, in Atkinson's wry, unvanquished characters, her swooping, savvy, sarcastic prose and authorial joie de vivre. In the end it is Jackson Brodie we remember and hope to meet again, gunning down the motorway with the stereo on, "someone who had weathered the world and still had something left to give". Publishers Weekly
The tempo picks up when we begin to learn who the attacker/murderer is, and we become privy to the workings of the inner minds of all of the characters. The story unfolds before our eyes, and we see the police and all of the characters inter-play. A surprising and innovative novel by Kate Atkinson. She just becomes better and better, and I am looking forward to her next novel- hopefully Jackson Brodie will be back in the fold. Highly Recommended. prisrob 12/25/06
25 internautes sur 27 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
One Good Turn, Twenty Weird Twists25 mai 2007
- Publié sur Amazon.com
I spent too much time reading this book, getting to two pages one day, ten on the next, putting it away for a week. This was a mistake. One Good Turn takes one twist of fate from five or six points of view and pulls together a story drafted with a deft command of the Queen's tongue (I do mean ENGLISH) and lovely divergent backstories and character development pieces. It's a mystery wrapped in a Jane Austin novel strung together with pearls.
One auto accident brings several main characters together on journeys that lead the reader into the mystery of the Honda Man, a road raging thug who clubs another driver in clear view of several witnesses. Ms. Atkinson stammers the time frame to allow the participating characters to ramp up to the accident, and my stop-start reading of this book made the story difficult to follow. I heartily recommend no more than a few sittings of extended reading to fully absorb the action. This is no standard issue action novel, so it's a bit of genre bender where the adventure is sluced with plenty of prose. Enjoy.
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Beautifully Constructed, Interesting and Coherent17 avril 2007
A. A. Tranmer
- Publié sur Amazon.com
This novel has an interesting and intricate plot peopled with interesting and varied characters. Even with its complexities this book is exceptionally readable and fails to confuse or confound. It's written in the revolving-door style of storytelling that is becoming popular in modern movie making. A number of characters from different backgrounds--whose lives are inexplicably intertwined through destiny to the end of some greater good or evil--learn, experience, and grow through their fated interactions (think "Crash" and "Babel").
I enjoyed the read. My one criticism was that I found the ending wanting. It seemed as though perhaps the book had gotten too long, and with a looming deadline, the author did the best she could to wrap it up. I'm not sure how I would have changed it, just that I feel there had to be a more gripping resolution. The twist never came for me.
15 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Very good, if not quite up to Case Histories24 octobre 2006
- Publié sur Amazon.com
Case Histories, Atkinson's previous novel, began with three separate stories of death and disappearance. In the world of mystery novels, those stories are supposed to wind up connected. While the lives of the survivors do become intertwined, the 'solutions' of the mysteries remain separate and random. There is no grand denouncement. The end of Case Histories is much like life itself: you can accept it has meaning, reject everything as random, curse the universe or move on.
One Good Turn does something else--you might even say it deliberately does the opposite. Without giving anything away, all the strands come together into a single picture. But Atkinson has not abandoned the literary novel for mystery conventions, There is an element of farce at work here - people coming and going, incredible coincidences, concealed intentions. (The `stage' is Edinburgh during the annual theater festival, which should be taken as a hint of Atkinson's intentions.)
The farcical elements are lightly handled, but they are the key to accepting the coincidences that drive the story. Also, Atkinson's characters never behave as if they are in on the joke. The danger and disappointments are real to them.
All in all, One Good Turn is an interesting, extremely well written balancing act. It is a mystery, a literary novel and an experiment. I think the element of farce should have been a little more pronounced, but at the very least it is always highly entertaining. Even if it may not quite achieve what it set out to do, One Good Turn will probably be one of the best novels you'll read this year.
10 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
"Boxes within boxes, dolls within dolls, worlds within worlds..."12 décembre 2006
- Publié sur Amazon.com
In a book that is more fun than any other book I've read all year, Kate Atkinson creates a series of bizarre characters, all involved with murder--either planning it, committing it, or trying to avoid it. Many seemingly unrelated characters, involved in several seemingly unrelated plot lines, make their appearance in the first fifty pages. During the four days in which the novel takes place, however, these characters and plots start to overlap and eventually come together, until, at the end, the reader is smiling with pleasure at the brilliant plotting and ironic twists of fate--full of admiration for Atkinson's skill in bringing it all together with such panache.
In the main plot line, an Edinburgh automobile accident leaves "Paul Bradley," a mysterious man and innocent victim, at the mercy of a crazed, baseball bat-wielding Honda driver. A witness, Martin Canning, the timid writer of Nina Riley mystery stories, reacts instinctively to the impending carnage, hurling his laptop at the Honda driver and saving "Paul Bradley" from certain death. A second set of characters revolves around Graham Hatter, the wealthy developer of Hatter Homes, who is in trouble for bribery, money laundering, and fraud in the building of cheap tract houses.
Jackson Brodie, former cop and private investigator, in Edinburgh for a drama festival in which his girlfriend is involved, introduces a third plot line when he discovers a woman's body on the rocks beside the ocean. It washes out to sea, nearly drowning him when he tries to retrieve it. Sgt. Louise Monroe, who lives in one of the Hatter Homes and whose son is a petty thief, is assigned to investigate the report of the body Brodie claims to have seen. Additional threads involve a housecleaning company/escort service, a second-rate comedian who "comes to dinner," and events which took place in Russia some years ago.
Full family backgrounds and work histories are given for all the characters, and it is through these that the reader often detects some of their interconnections. Ironies abound, and as characters' dreams are revealed and their fantasies are explored, the reader comes to know them--until Atkinson reveals even more surprises and shows how much we have yet to learn. With action that comes fast and furious, devious plot twists, and deliciously dark humor, Atkinson crafts a novel that proves one of Jackson Brodie's maxims: "A coincidence is just an explanation waiting to happen." By the end of this novel, all the explanations have happened. n Mary Whipple