Trackers by Deon Meyer (unabridged audiobook read by Simon Vance, translated by K.L. Seegers; 16 hours on 14 CDs): Recently divorced housewife Milla gets a job writing reports for the South African government. She doesn’t know what she’s writing for; she’s given a subject to research and some additional intelligence and compiles it into a coherent story. When she meets one of the subjects of her reports and falls in love, things get really complicated. Lemmer is a paroled bodyguard who is asked to watch over the transport of a couple of endangered black rhinos. Mat is an ex-police private detective searching for a woman’s husband who suddenly went missing several months before. Yenina is a high-ranking government official attempting to intercept a mysterious shipment planned by some religious extremists. What do these all have to do with each other? Honestly, even after finishing the book, I’m not entirely certain. Milla’s story had me cheering her on despite the somewhat morally ambiguous circumstances surrounding her. Lemmer was amusing but his story felt unfinished; however, I understand this was not the first Lemmer book and probably not the last, so I can live with that. I was pretty lost for the entire detective story, and the epilogue really didn’t illuminate much for me. I was fascinated to learn more about South African history and culture, and as I said, Milla’s story was very good. It just felt more like separate stories set in the same universe rather than one coherent novel. Perhaps something was lost in translation.
A note on the audio: I’ve enjoyed Vance’s narration of several other books, and this was no exception. However, it did cause me to discover something: you know how in the Matrix movies, Agent Smith (played by Hugo Weaving) talks kind of … strangely? Turns out that’s Weaving’s attempt at an American accent. I only know this because Vance is British as the day is long, and all his American characters talk like Agent Smith. It’s rather unintentionally hilarious, but luckily did not detract from my enjoyment of the story. I guess not all British people can be Hugh Laurie. :)
Also posted on BookCrossing.