Book Review: Morgue Drawer Four by Jutta Profijit

Pascha steals high quality cars for a used car dealer who is into that sort of thing and probably lots of other illegal things too. Unfortunately Pascha dies during a job while trying to dispose of a body – he plunges from a temporary bridge (though he maintains he was pushed). His body dies but somehow his spirit lives on. We hear about his OBE and how it differs from all those “TV freaks”. He doesn’t get the white light “blah blah blah” and consequently, he watches as his body is taken to the morgue – and horrifyingly watches his own post mortem.

When Martin (the Coroner) grabs the corpse’s testicles, the-not-dead Pascha shouts out to leave them alone. Martin hears him and this is where the story begins. Once the mortician comes to terms with the fact that the man he is presently examining is actually talking to him, that’s when Pascha begins nagging (and I do mean nagging) Martin to solve his murder – knowing full well that being drunk (Pascha admits to having a drink but exclaims surprise at the high level ot alcohol in his system) and tumbling from a temporary walkway would inevitably result in cause of death recorded as “misadventure”. Together the pair begin to piece togther his last moments and whether it had anything to do with his ex girlfriend, the man he owed money to or the  body he was trying to dump.

This is one of the funniest books I have read in a long time. Pascha is relentlessly funny in a deadpan way and there are many jokes made at Martin’s expense. Martin has his moments though and they do make a great double act at times.

Only one thing really grated on me: Americanisms. It’s written by a German, set in Germany but translated into English using a lot of American terms and at times they are quite irritating. I don’t have a problem with American English terms, but this is about context and as Germans learn British English as a second language – it is aluminium not aluminum, pavement not sidewalk etc – Germans are far more likely to use the British terms. The style just didn’t sit well with me. Otherwise, it is very easy on the eye and flows very well – as you expect of black comedy

Dark, morbid humour if you like that sort of thing. Will particularly appeal to fans of shows like Pushing Daisies

2 thoughts on “Book Review: Morgue Drawer Four by Jutta Profijit

    1. Fun definitely I read it in a single day (today) on a log train journey so it’s an ideal read for a long trip.

      I don’t know how I stopped myself laughing out loud :)

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