Review: The Sinner by Petra Hammesfahr, John Brownjohn (translator)
Publication Date: July 25th, 2017
Rating: 4 stars
On a sunny summer afternoon by the lake, Cora Bender stabs a man to death. Why? What would cause this quiet, kind young mother to stab a complete stranger in the throat over and over again, in full view of her family and friends? For the local police, it's an open-and-shut case. Cora quickly confesses and there's no shortage of witnesses, but those questions remain unanswered. Haunted by the case, the police commissioner refuses to close the file and begins his own maverick investigation. So begins the slow unraveling of Cora's past, a harrowing descent into a woman's private hell. A dark, spellbinding novel, where the truth is to be questioned at every turn, The Sinner has been a bestseller around the world, and is poised to be a summer smash with the coming TV adaptation, already hailed as one of the most anticipated shows of the summer.
The Sinner by Petra Hammesfahr was unlike anything I’ve read before. The only reason I found out about this one is through the TV show, and of course once I realized the show was based on this book, I had to read it. The Sinner was very interesting and throughout the entire book, I just wanted to know what happened to Cora. Even in the blurb I knew something crazy happened because people just don’t wake up and kill someone, right?
Cora is a very, very, very complex character. At times it was hard to follow what the heck she was talking about, but in a way I sort of got it. That didn’t happen until the truth was revealed and the book ended, so I would say Cora likes to talk in ‘codes’. I didn’t mind getting the present and then flashes of the past because those parts are needed. To understand the whole book, Cora’s past is very important. In saying that, I felt the present parts were a bit dragged out. In all honesty, the book didn’t really pick up until like the last 100 or so pages, or if you’re on Kindle, I would say the last 30-20%.
I will also like to point out that this book has some crazy and not so sweet moments. The TV show in my opinion, downplays a lot in the book. I was shocked to read some of Cora’s past/present and I definitely was left with my mouth hanging open. I would’ve liked to have read a better ending because I really didn’t like it. It’s not a cliffhanger, but I felt as if it was left unfinished in a way. Maybe we’ll see more of Cora? Who knows?