Complex character development was mostly done for Claudia, but also to a great extent for Thibault, a very rich man the type current media seems to thrive on demonizing. Thibault, who is one of the potential individuals Barry is assigned to kill, is made, by circumstances I will not delve into for fear of spoiling the book, to spend a lot of time with a man named Hixon. The latter is, more or less, an average American (financially, at least), and challenges the very, very rich and very, very powerful Thibault through a conversation thought-provoking in a post-Occupy Wall Street era.
The last thing I will mention about this is that I also really liked the layers of relationships and connections between the victim and the other members of the elitist organization he is a part of. These intricate connections between the characters is the third major reason that kept me reading. And this is all I will say on the matter, as I really would not want to ruin the fun.
As for the literary quality, the book flows pretty well. It is very well written, includes beautiful descriptions that give life to scenes such as a motorcycle ride through the breath-taking winding mountain roads that ends in a deadly shootout. I also love the fact that the book is both realistic yet avoids the trap becoming crass.
As I mentioned earlier, this is not to say that The Tourist Killer book is perfect. There are a couple of little things that broke the otherwise good flow. The main thing is to expect sometimes awkward scene changes, but a quick reread of the pages pretty much clears up misunderstandings. I also would have liked more development for a wider circle of characters, which would have made the conversation between Thibault and Hixon all the more interesting.
The Tourist Killer is a strong first novel by a promising author. I would comfortably recommend it to readers interested in complex plots that makes space for reflection at many levels. It is an easy read, flowing nicely despite the sometimes confusing moments.
No doubt FC Etier’s sequel, hinted at the ended of the book, will prove even more satisfying. And there is always potential for Claudia Barry will become another Kay Scarpetta, whose life we will continue following for a long time.