Blue Monday by Nicci French // Summary & Book Review

Recently, I have been reading crime fiction novels a lot. The story is usually the same. There is a murder, a dead body, an investigator, and a female as a love interest. Blue Monday by Nicci French comes as fresh breath. It is also a crime thriller, but we don’t have a detective to follow. We have a psychotherapist to lead.

Though she does not have all the resources, somehow, she solves the kidnapping cases and brings the truth out. All in a believable manner, never breaking the fiction walls. The psychological insight we get into the brains of criminals is also great to read. I cannot say how correct all the psychotherapy stuff is in the book, but it was interesting to digest.

The story of Blue Monday begins with a girl getting kidnapped. I thought the story would follow the investigation of that kidnapping, and we would see more of the sister. But the story takes a time dive in the next chapter, and we are 18-20 years ahead.

We are now with a patient who is confused about his mental health — and the physiotherapist sent him to a renowned psychotherapist. However, it turns out that the psychotherapist was not able to maintain the session. So, the patient is now transferred to Frienda Klien — the protagonist.

On the other hand, the police are searching for a kidnapped boy, which is news. During one of the sessions, the patient talks about detachment and short-term amnesia and his wish to become a father. He described his imaginary son to the doctor. The imaginative kid looks similar to the one who is kidnapped. Taking a hint, Frieda thought that maybe her patient was kidnapping kids unconsciously to satisfy his desire to become a father. She reports it to the investigation, but it turns out to be false. However, it connects Frieda with the investigator, who convinces her to talk with the sister of the lost girl (18 years back) upon learning Frieda’s skills. He thinks there might be a connection, or even if not, it could lead to something new.

Saying more than this might ruin your story experience.

blue monday nicci french book review

I usually enjoy books with psychological aspects, but several books overdo it. They made it look like mind reading. Nicci French maintains believability; as the case unfolds and the information is revealed, it does not come as a shock but as a conclusion.

The biggest proof of this is the ending of Blue Monday. You can see the twist in the ending so easily that you would doubt the intelligence of Frieda and all the book characters, as they’re missing the obvious. While reading that, I was a bit annoyed. It was a subversion of expectations. I expected the narrator to win, but lately, I have read books where the antagonist won in the end, like What My Sister Knew.

The story is quite tight and fast-paced, but several characters are just there for no reason. Maybe they are set up for the next book, but they do not provide much value in this book.

For example, the entire love angle of Frieda and Sandy was what?? They fall in love and make love, and then Sandy says he is leaving the country and wants Frieda to come with him. It does not affect Frieda in any way, as she is already so close and introverted. I can skip that romance bit, and it will not make a dent in the characterization or plot growth.

While there are characters that force Frieda to reveal her real self, like her sister, niece, and some workman. When I am on the workman, let me tell you, there is literally a hole in the floor as a metaphor.

Another subject book discuss is nature vs nutture. In case of twins, how much the difference does the growing environment made. There are so  many research on the topic, but nothing is conclusive. I have also discussed this concept in my various book review as this is recurring theme in the literature. I don’t have any fixed answer. The world is complex and works in complicated manner.

Do I recommend Blue Monday?

I do. It was nice thriller with fcus on psychological perspectives of criminal. There is no rush, action or anything – just a mental gymnastics to find the kidnapper. It is a great one sitting read.

Book Summary
Blue Monday

Blue Monday by Nicci French is a page turner psychological thriller that you can read in a day. It is first of 7 day Frieda Klien series.


Author: Nicci French

Editor's Rating:

Faizan Fahim

Hello, welcome to this blog. Just writing reviews of the book I like. Also, favorite quotes, poetry, memes, sometimes other topics too, but always related to literature. So join me on Twitter to talk to me.

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