Open Season takes on a couple of challenging themes.
The primary plot involves the plight of failed refugee claimants in Canada who actually have a good claim to refugee status.
The secondary plot involves the trafficking of young women from the Ukraine to Canada and forcing them into prostitution.
There are many serious issues on each plot line.
What distressed me was the one dimensional quality of those characters who were not Montreal City Police officers or the victims.
I understand the desire to portray those involved in the kidnapping of the Guatemalan journalist, Luna, and those who trafficked Katya but they were all evil. There was no nuance to them.
What bothered me more was that members of other law enforcement agencies were also depicted as bad.
The Canadian Border Service enforcing court orders were seen as cruel.
The members of an RCMP task force into international human trafficking were uncaring and mean.
The narrow picture of the criminals and other law enforcement officials left me considering the book good but not great.
Showing the villains as humans does not diminish their wickedness. John Le Carré in his books creates villains who are real characters. Richard "Dickie" Roper in The Night Manager is a suave sophisticated arms dealer with a family who is among the most dangerous men in the world.
I regret the current tendency in crime fiction to create villains who are only wicked.
The other issue was the cover. It did not attract me. While covers should not matter I admit they do influence me. Having just said I found the cover unappealing I received a comment from Brandi who said the cover drew her to the book. I would be interested in comments of other readers on their reaction to the cover which is at the top of this post.