Synopsis of The Lighthouse
A secure and secluded retreat for the rich and powerful becomes the setting for an unsettling series of murders.
Combe Island off the Cornish coast is a restful haven for the elite. But when one of its distinguished visitors is found hanging from the island’s famous lighthouse in what appears to have been a murder, the peace is shattered. Commander Adam Dalgliesh is called in to handle the sensitive case, but at a difficult time for him and his depleted team. He is uncertain about his future with his girlfriend Emma Lavenham; his principle detective Kate Miskin is going through an emotional crisis; and the ambitious Sergeant Francis Benton-Smith is not happy about having a female boss. After a second brutal killing, the whole investigation is jeopardized, and Dalgliesh is faced with a danger even more insidious than murder.
Synopsis of The Lighthouse taken from Amazon
Review of The Lighthouse by P.D. James
It turns out that, not long ago, I realized that I hadn’t read The Lighthouse in the Adam Dalgliesh series but I’d read all the others. So I decided to read it. Well, I wouldn’t have missed a thing, quite frankly.
The story of The Lighthouse is not bad and it’s one of the classics, of the Agatha Christie type or of the author’s own early days. But she hasn’t been able to modernize with the times, she continues to use so many descriptions that it makes you want to stop reading, and the protagonist seems like an Ancient hero embedded in the 21st century (the novel is from 2005, I think); a very little credible character at the time she wrote this installment.
On the other hand, if we think a bit about the fact that the first novel in the series is from 1962, Commander Dalgliesh would be around 73 years old in 2005. Other authors such as Ms Agatha or Rex Stout, knew how to resolve the timelessness of their protagonists much better. Of course, in El Faro, they already use mobile phones.
In the Light House, the investigation shines for its absence (almost), the protagonist spends half the time isolated by SARS and the resolution of the case comes down to a vision or hallucination that he has during a period of fever in which, suddenly, he sees the light and everything is crystal clear.
So, pretty messy.
I’m sorry I can’t say anything more complimentary about this lady, of whom I was a regular reader forty years ago. What’s more, the book I liked the most by her is The Children of Men, which I consider science fiction (another genre that I like). I don’t remember too much about it (I read it in 1992) but I know I liked it a lot and whenever I stumble across the name of P.D. James the first thing I think of is that book.