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The Mouse by Georges Simenon
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This is going to sound really silly, but I must admit to being somewhat disappointed that the title character is NOT actually a mouse, as he is portrayed on the cover. Just a nickname. Sometimes I can be rather too literal for my own good.

M. La Souris (aka "The Mouse" en anglais) is a tramp in Paris who comes across a dead body and a wallet full of money, then eventually becomes embroiled in the ensuing criminal investigation. It's a promising plot to be sure, and I enjoyed it in pockets, but I felt the ending was rather rushed and the murder didn't really seem to have much of a point. I mean obviously the people who murdered the guy didn't want to be discovered, but they didn't seem to have murdered him for a particularly good reason. I may have to read this again in English to see how much I missed.

The fact that I read this in my second language makes me wonder how much of my rating can honestly be chalked up to the story and how much to the fact that I was mentally back-translating, or at the very least writing down words to look up later, and therefore not as involved in the story as I would be normally be. I did find that I enjoyed the story more when I was reading on the bus and had no room to write down unfamiliar words or go off to look them up. And that is why I have chosen not to assign a rating.

This book has by no means dampened my enthusiasm for Simenon in his original language; on the contrary, I plan to read more. And perhaps this one again in future, now that I know the rough outlines.
  rabbitprincess | Mar 18, 2012 |
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