I found this one on a list of unusual crime novels. It definitely fits the bill.
I think this book is kind of tricksy. It’s billed as a crime novel, and it is. Eva, the protagonist, works for folks in the London underground and there is a crime at the center of the story. But really, this is a character study about a low class English woman who just wants to wrestle and live her life the best way she can. It’s as much about the sport of women’s minor league wrestling as it is the shady stuff Eva does.
The enjoyment one takes from this book will come down to how one feels about Eva. Everything is told from her perspective. Author Liza Cody does a great job of giving her a distinct voice. She’s an unreliable narrator with an opinion on everything. You see the bowels of London through her eyes. At times, I laughed with her, pitied her, felt anger towards her, was annoyed by her or completely turned off altogether. Parts of it work and others do not; Cody can get carried away in certain unfocused scenes. But the parts that do work are fun.
While this book definitely plays for laughs, there are some moments where you will cringe or feel terrible, especially near the end, where Eva’s unreliable nature comes back to haunt the reader in a big way. You might like Eva at the beginning, you probably won’t on the last page. But it was great to read her story. This is indeed an unusual crime novel. It’s also a good one.