We’ve been afraid that John Banville writing as Benjamin Black would eventually get bored with the guidelines of the crime novel, loose as they actually are. He has. Gotten bored. The new one – just getting catalogued – is supposed to be about the mysterious death of a Dublin news tycoon – something that should resonate with everyone given the Murdoch Hacking crisis – but it’s mostly about the recurring pathologist Quirke and his lust for the French widow of the press baron whose head was blown to bits by a shotgun. Oh, and Quirke’s dying for a drink. What’s not about gloomy Quirke is about his gloomy assistant in the gloomy pathology lab. We guess that if you’re as grand as John Banville, and he is pretty grand, your editor is loath to tell you that you’re slacking off and that whatever fan base you had been building is going to wander away without saying good bye. Too bad. Christine Falls was pretty good.