So this book has an interesting cover and makes it look like it’s like some kind of re imagining of the mystery and suspense genre. Instead, this might have been among the blandest mystery novels I’ve ever read. The crime is perfectly fine…an abusive ex-husband is killed while attacking his ex-wife and ex-stepdaughter. The mom panics and while trying to figure out her next steps, her next door neighbor comes over and offers to help her hide the body. Why? Because he’s been secretly in-love or more so obsessed with her for a long time, including showing up at her job every day for the memorable past. She works at a Bento restaurant and even though he hardly eats lunch, he buys one every day.
Anyway, it turns out he’s an old colleague/classmate of the physics professor friend of the lead detective who remember how brilliant and peculiar this man was.
And so the mystery goes from there, having us know all the moves of all the characters and having the suspense be whether or not they get caught. It does a good job of creating a somewhat complex relationship between the murder and the man next door.
However, like I said the book felt muted and understated in bad ways. In addition the physics professor/amateur detective offers very little of anything to the plot other than provided some insight to help solve the mystery. But as a character he’s not very interesting and completely underdeveloped. It was a short book that I was fairly bored with well before halfway through.