This whimsical novel can be gobbled up in a trice, and is almost as delicious as the sugary donuts that Detective Bennie September still eats, despite having put on the Banting diet by his wife. Paige Nick has the gall to murder Tim Noakes, the Banting diet guru, in the first few pages (he endorses the book so at least we know he has a sense of humour; either that or he would like Paige to endorse his next revolutionary diet book). From then on, it’s a rollicking piss-take on diets, crime, social media and other South African darlings.
Here is a sample of the humour, the type that makes you giggle; when Bennie identifies the victim as Professor Tim Noakes to the security guard, he whistles and asks, ‘Who would want to hurt that oke?’ and Bennie responds, ‘I reckon there’s probably a queue. Hell, I’ve been wanting to kill him myself for months.’
The funniest thing are the Facebook posts from THE BANTING FOR LIFE FACEBOOK PAGE. When fans find out about Tim Noakes’s murder, there are incredulous posts on the page bemoaning his loss, down to the typical fashion in which people emote on Facebook, including typos, people sniping at each other and number of Likes at the bottom of each post.
The cast of characters include a scammer, hijackers who mistakenly hijack an ambulance, a gay couple, a 46 year old sales assistant in a bookstore and the managing director of a bakery whose business is going downhill with the whole ‘carbs are the devil’ vibe. Many of them have an axe to grind with Tim Noakes for one reason or the other and it is intriguing to try and figure who did the deed.
The names of some of the characters are also hilarious and there is a healthy dose of South African slang, drawing, as it does, from a few different languages. As the story develops, it becomes clear that there is a lot of skulduggery going on, to say nothing of red herrings, but will the murderer ever be found?
Treat yourself, read this book and lighten your load (if not your weight) for a few hours.