Detective Esa Khattak is in the midst of his evening prayers when he receives a phone call asking that he and his partner, Detective Rachel Getty, look into the death of a local man who has fallen off a cliff. At first Christopher Drayton’s death—which looks like an accident—doesn’t seem to warrant a police investigation, especially not from Khattak and Rachel’s team, which handles minority-sensitive cases.
But it soon comes to light that Drayton might have been living under an assumed name, and he may not have been the upstanding Canadian citizen he appeared to be. In fact, he may have been a Bosnian war criminal with ties to the Srebrenica massacre of 1995. And if that’s true, any number of people could have had reason to help him to his death.
As Rachel and Khattak dig deeper into the life and death of Christopher Drayton, every question seems to lead only to more questions, and there are no easy answers. Did the specters of Srebrenica return to haunt Drayton at last, or had he been keeping secrets of an entirely different nature? Or, after all, did a man just fall to his death in a tragic accident?
In her spellbinding debut, The Unquiet Dead, Ausma Zehanat Khan has written a complex and provocative story of loss, redemption, and the cost of justice that will linger with readers long after turning the final page.
A special thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
THE UNQUIET DEAD, Ausma Zehanat Khan’s stunning debut, and the first in the Rachel Getty and Esa Khattak series delivers a powerful and complex mystery and suspense, keeping you holding your breath, for the next installment.
Detective Rachel Getty (she has some secrets of her own) and her boss Esa Khattak (a second-generation Canadian Muslim with some secrets) who heads the new Community Policing Section, created to deal with delicate cases involving minorities are investigating a crime.
Christopher Drayton’s death- who fell from a cliff (a sensitive case). However, not everything is as it appears and Khattak is not being forthcoming with information and Drayton may have been a war criminal with ties to the Srebrenica massacre of 1995. Who is out to get him, was foul play involved, or was this an accident?
An emotional, heartbreaking and haunting mystery of horrific crimes committed against Muslims in Bosnia. Khan delivers an engrossing story of tragedy and devastation which will grip you to the end. Lovers of international crime fiction will devour THE UNQUIET DEAD, written with beautiful lyrical prose; one of loss and redemption.
The novel is based upon events that occurred during the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia, formerly a republic of the nation of Yugoslavia. Incredible and extensive research -- drive of those for ethnic and religious uniformity; “Courage, perseverance, and dignity in the face of appalling carnage remind us why Bosnia was a place worth saving.”
The author’s background, a former law professor with a specialty in Balkan war crimes offers her incredible insights making for a stellar and impressive debut.
Her credentials and associations - a former adjunct professor at American and Canadian universities, she holds a Ph.D. in International Human Rights Law, with the 1995 Srebrenica massacre as the main subject of her dissertation. She also worked briefly with the Bosnian Canadian Relief Association during the war and met members of Bosnian communities, witnesses, activists, and scholars. Well done!