Now I will confess, since doing a little writing of my own, the way, and the why, I read has changed. I always read nonfiction to learn stuff I didn’t know, or to ensure I knew what I thought I knew, and I read fiction because I always liked stories. Nowadays, I read fiction more to learn things than for the enjoyment I find in a new story. Things like unique story structure, as from "The Girl on the Train."
In “Playing With Fire,” I found a scratch for both my itches.
First of all, I enjoyed the story. Much of it is set in Venice, and I love Venice. It is about music, and I love music, though if you are near me in church, you might think “If he loves music so much, why does he sound like pre-Novocain dentistry is happening?”
So I can’t tell you about the second part without the warning above. And if you are worried about having the story spoiled, and you like good stories, my advice is to read the book and not any more of this. If however, you are interested in things like story structure and story telling techniques, well then.
About half way through the story, I began to get a hint about the story narrator. I wondered if she might be in the category of “Unreliable Narrator.” Lo and behold. “Playing With Fire,” in my mind, is a great example of this kind of story. So there, you have two reasons to get Ms Garritsen’s book. I give it five stars for both my reasons.