Friday, April 1, 2016
Review of A Little More Free by John McFetridge (ECW Press, 2015)
A Little More Free is the second outing for Constable Eddie Dougherty, an anglophone cop working in the largely francophone city of Montreal. The story has two real strengths. The first is Dougherty who is a fairly ordinary cop from a working class background who’s likeable and dogged. The second is the historical contextualisation and sense of place – McFetridge places the reader in the city during the famous Canadian-Soviet ice hockey series and the tail end of the Vietnam war. While the tale has three central cases - the mass murder of thirty seven people, a major heist, and the murder of an army deserter – the telling is somewhat low-key, focusing on the mundane, everyday grinding out of an investigation. The result is an engaging story that spits and sizzles rather than boils and explodes. It’s an interesting tactic, but one that works well, imbuing the tale with a sense of realism and drawing the reader into Dougherty’s world. I’ll certainly be reading the next in the series, One or the Other.