Do Not Disturb: An addictive psychological thriller
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Something Bad happened to Adrian when he and Kirsty and their two girls lived in London, so never having run a business before, they decide to buy an almost derelict property in Wales and, once refurbished, open it as a B&B. Why? Because Kirsty is Welsh and loves Wales. What better reason could there be. So this is Mistake Number One. Asking Kirsty's domineering and controlling mother for a loan is Mistake Number Two, thus allowing her to move in and be a not-so-silent partner. Mistake Number Three is letting Kirsty''s cousin Selena, a woman she hates and hasn't spoken to for seventeen years, to come and stay.
She has determined that Rwanda, or rather ‘Kagame’ was responsible for the murder. We are assured there would be incontrovertible evidence, were the government of South Africa not suppressing it to shield Rwanda. In The Times, Ian Birrell called the book an "absorbing Shakespearean saga" and says that Wrong "exposes a more complex" narrative than conventional depictions of Rwanda, "showing the savagery that lies beneath the surface of a regime hailed by many Western admirers".  In The New York Times, Howard W. French stated that the book is "perhaps the most ambitious attempt yet to tell the dark story of Rwanda and the region’s deeply intertwined tragedies for a general audience".  Peter Beaumont in the Guardian states "Do Not Disturb represents one of the most far-reaching historical revisions of Kagame and his regime."  According to Reuters the book is "deeply researched" and "Michela Wrong’s exposé of the deadly workings of the Kagame regime, will make uncomfortable reading for his international cheerleaders."  In New Statesman, Martin Fletcher states that Wrong "rips off the regime’s veil of respectability to expose the horrors beneath".  Sigh.... the ending fizzled for me. The plot twist used a recycled tactic that I dislike. Oh, the let down.And there is no mistaking the recurrence of the familiar tropes in the literary tool kit that is apparently essential for any writer who has taken a position against the RPF. Or the voices of “the former members of the RPF closest to Kagame.” It is telling, the extent to which Western commentators, journalists, politicians, and even the United Nations, have suddenly, obsessively, almost desperately, focused on the alleged “looting of Congolese resources” with every mention of Rwanda.
Although her description as “a British authority on Africa” is tad overdone, the reviewers’ breathless tone about Wrong’s book is understandable. She is an experienced journalist, for whom exploring different angles on a familiar theme will come naturally.She balanced the story incredibly well with her intricate premise, fast paced storytelling skills, compelling suspense and surprising twists with cleverly POV switches between the 3 characters. And, in the room next door to Quinn’s, an elderly fortune teller, who resides at the hotel full time, warns Quinn to leave while she can.
With the predictable compliance of the congenitally murderous, venal Mobutu Sese Seko, France gave safe conduct to the perpetrators of the Rwanda genocide into the Democratic Republic of Cong (DRC), Zaire, as it was then. Of course, all goes far from according to plan.... the first guest arriving with an unexpected dog in tow and immediately announcing that the house has a “bad energy” is only the start. Kirsty’s long-estranged cousin Selena has also come to stay with her disabled daughter, fleeing her marriage and - as ever - bringing trouble with her. Strange things are happening - threatening messages which seem designed to taunt Adrian, who is recovering from depression, in particular.
As well as the theory of the “Untold Story” within the strategy of Rwanda’s mass murderers to rewrite history, was the emphasis to always target the person of Paul Kagame, a much hated figure to them, much as was his predecessor as leader of the RPF, the late Gisa Rwigyema. Married couple Kirstie and Adrian move to the Brecon Beacons in Wales with their children Amelia 11, Evie 6 and their grandmother Carol to run a newly renovated B&B. They moved from London hoping for a calmer pace of life after Adrian suffered depression and walked out of his stressful job. All in all, while not my favorite by this author (that would be Last Seen Alive), this definitely came a close second. An eye-opening tale of dark pasts, motherhood, and heartbreaking realities, I found myself spellbound by Douglas’s masterful words more times than I could count. After all, between the manipulation and the deviousness, who knew where this story was going to end up? I mean, besides very near to perfection, of course… Rating of 4.5 stars.