In The Book of Mirrors by E.O. Chirovici, a literary agent named Peter Katz, decides to give a manuscript that had been sent a month prior a read, seeing as the writer’s query letter stood out exponentially from everybody else’s and all. Entitled “The Book of Mirrors”, the manuscript is written by a man named Richard Flynn who, in the fall of 1987, had shared a house with a fetching Princeton psychology student named Laura Baines.
Through Laura, Richard meets the Socrates conjuring Professor Wieder, a man who’d rather systematically dissect your mind and lay it out on the table so that he can see what’s what rather than kick a soccer ball with you. More than two decades later, Wieder’s murder case is still unsolved, Richard Flynn dies of cancer and Laura Baines is a big shot in the world of psychology. Can freelance reporter John Keller get to the bottom of this mystery?
Having created a murder mystery that seems like it will remain unsolved even though many answers are given, E.O. Chirovici’s book will engage readers until the very end.
Professor Wieder was a bigheaded human encyclopedia of information, a “vivisectionist” of people’s minds, and revered on the whole by many a Princeton student as a god. His library of books is in complete disarray, however, so he hires our Richard Flynn to get his library more library-ish. The author wastes no time in revealing some signs for readers to look out for in this Wieder business, acting one way when Laura is around, and another when she’s not.
Richard became a suspect and then we see Mr. Katz, a reclusive fellow that one John Keller – a character that takes up the narrative in the second part of the book – likens to a “rubber plant at a party”, going through notions that the manuscript in his possession might be Flynn’s confession of Wieder’s murder. Simply flabbergasted, I never came to a point where I believed that Flynn had been involved in Wieder’s murder in any way.
Katz seems to believe this might be the case. If our author has intended for readers to agree with Katz on any of the points that he brings up concerning Flynn’s possible involvement with Wieder’s murder, then it’s a task not dutifully accomplished. If there could have been something about Flynn’s past, like something traumatic that he might’ve completely blacked out at one point in his life before Laura and Wieder, than Katz’s suspicions might’ve been more believable.
Back to the murder case and on to the second part of the novel. With Richard Flynn dying because of lung cancer and all, the truth behind Wieder’s murder has died with him. So how does the author plan on bringing Peter Katz, the rubber plant at the party, towards uncovering this truth? Will this literary agent play private investigator sort of like a really weird and uninteresting version of Bruce Wayne? Thank heavens, no.
The author has somebody more interesting in mind and that somebody is John Keller, a freelance journalist and a more simpatico character to follow. This is a book full of puzzles and people with lots of information that frustrates the man investigating the case to the point of calling it quits. Having created a murder mystery that seems like it will remain unsolved even though many answers are given, E.O. Chirovici’s book will engage readers until the very end.
I received a free copy of this book from Penguin Random House SA in exchange for an honest review.