One of D rrenmatt's most diabolically imagined and constructed novels, The Pledge was adapted for the screen in 2000 in a film directed by Sean Penn and starring Jack Nicholson.
Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Number of pages: 176
Weight: 218 g
Dimensions: 203 x 137 x 13 mm
Edition: New edition
"The Swiss essayist Friedrich D rrenmatt (1921-90) was a prolific writer of detective novels with a low regard for detective fiction. 'You set up your stories logically, like a chess game: all the detective needs to know is the rules, he replays the moves of the game, and checkmate, the criminal is caught and justice has triumphed. This fantasy drives me crazy.' D rrenmatt's tale doesn't so much alter the rules as sweep all the figures to the floor. Three young girls, each with blond braids and red dresses, are found dismembered in the woods. A pattern seems to emerge, yet the attempt to catch the killer develops into a fruitless obsession which drives the head of the investigation insane. D rrenmatt incorporates fairy-tale archetypes to distort the typical conventions of a psychological thriller--when little girls in red dresses skip off into the woods, should the investigation team focus their enquiries on a big, bad wolf? Not a book for anyone who likes a tidy conclusion, but as D rrenmatt says: 'The only way to avoid getting crushed by absurdity, is to humbly include the absurd in our calculations.'"-- (11/25/2006)