I’m not one for mystery novels, personally. In fact, I would have never even picked up the book had my father not been totally enamored with the series, already very popular in our homeland of Spain. Most often what I hate about detective novels, but not detective TV series, is the demeanor of the detective. Usually, writers like to go for the stoic and gruff archetype, sometimes an alcoholic, sometimes a divorced, often both. It’s honestly quite boring because it feels like they are all carbon copies of each other. Not so with Costas Haritos.
What makes this character different is that he doesn’t fit into those receptive and annoying trappings. He’s in his 60s, happily married, living daughter who is also happily married, kind of grumpy and sarcastic in an affable kind of way, he even has assistants (no going solo for this guy), and works for the Athenian police. There’s not a lot of darkness or violence involved in these series of mysteries, which is a saving grace for the series in a weird way. It’s not at all what you would expect from a detective novel.
Deadline in Athens deals with an open-and-shut case of two dead Albanian reporters, one which Haritas himself finds to be relatively ordinary. When a third journalist turns up missing after insisting there was more to the case, Haritas knows it’s time to go back and look again. The dry wit of the book is what makes this, and the novels that follow, such excellent and fun reads. It even got me to start reading mystery novels again (thus far, J.K. Rowling’s Cormoran Strike series seems to be a bit of a bore). My advice is to find this page-turner in a bookstore near you and give it a shot!