The Sixth Lamentation - William Brodrick In creating clerical detective Father Anselm William Brodrick, drew upon his own experience first as an Augustinian friar and later as a practicing barrister plus the actual story in the Sixth Lamentation is loosely based on the wartime experiences of his mother

Elderly Agnes Aubret lived through the German occupation of Paris and the persecution of its Jewish citizens but now time is running out for her as she is dying from motor neurone disease. At Father Anselm's monastery a man has just claimed sanctuary as he has been exposed as an SS officer and alleged war criminal.

This is the premise of the Sixth Lamentation which weaves a huge cast of characters spread over three generations and their interconnecting stories, through German occupied Paris to modern day London.

The only thing wrong with it was my own doing. Where I went wrong was listening to it as an audio book whilst driving… as the first third of the book introduces layer upon layer of story, endless characters and to make it worst I found out after that the hard copy had a list of characters at the beginning for reference!. I think if I had know this I would have read it instead of listening to it as I found it hard to engage with as I was, up until about one third of the way in, struggling with the vast cast and the French, German, Italian names.

I really admired the way the author managed this labyrinthine story with its twists and turns and revelations. The historical attention to detail was superb and as the author states 'I did not want to record a single detail that was not supported by a contemporaneous record.'

This is a novel that requires time and patience to fully appreciate it and I would imagine that it is a remarkable reading experience.

I haven’t been put off and intent reading A Whispered Name by the same author