Six Four is a Japanese crime, police procedural thriller about a former detective, Yoshinobu Mikami, who is now an officer in media relations within the regional police force, who is tasked to mediate between the father, Amaminga, of kidnap and murder victim Shoko, who was abducted and killed fourteen years previously and whose killer was never brought to justice. In order to raise the profile of the case once more in an attempt to find new leads, the visit of a commissioner is arranged but thrown into jeopardy as the the victim’s father is reluctant to take part and the press are threatening to boycott the event.
Whilst trying to do his job, Mikami stumbles across information about the case that was suppressed fourteen years ago to cover up a mistake. However, can he alone get to the bottom of who was responsible for Six Four, whilst dealing with the quagmire of politics affecting his own position?
Told solely from Mikami’s point of view we are led down this story off the strength of his investigative instinct. Although, Mikami was one of the officers involved in the original case, much has been kept quiet and we follow his re-investigation as we also learn that his 13 year old daughter, Ayumi, left home three months ago.
The plot is undeniably slow and we follow the machinations of Mikami’s mind as well as the daily drama of his job, which sadly slows things down even more. The characters are well written, but it is difficult to keep track as many have similar names. But despite some of these issues I could not stop reading this thriller until it finished because after all I really wanted to know what happened to Shoko and who the culprit was who managed to stay hidden for fourteen years.
I was hoping the mystery of Ayumi, Mikami’s daughter would also have a positive resolution but although somewhat elaborated upon, it was by no means concluded.
There are many aspects of this best selling thriller that I found interesting but it was not the fast-paced easy read that reaches a conclusion without challenge. If you have patience in abundance to see this one through, the twist, when it finally comes will be worth your endurance.