What I liked the most in this novel is the protagonist Saburo Sugimura. It is interesting to see a series starting before the protagonist becomes a detective. In this novel, Sugimura is just an ordinary salaryman, he does not have any particular skills, but he is kind and has a strong sense of justice, and it is easy to identify with him. I want to know how Sugimura will evolve so I will definitely read the other books of the series.
I found that the book had a realistic touch that might be frustrating for the amateur of detective novels. Sugimura is not a detective and while he does “investigate”, some or most of his work leads to nothing. The novel shows how hard it is for an ordinary person without connections to suddenly turn into a detective and solve a case. On the one hand, it allowed the reader to identify with the protagonist and eventually like him, but on the other hand, I found that the plot was not engaging enough for a mystery novel.
If you add to this a very slow start that needs to justify why Sugimura starts playing the detective and helps the two sisters, the book felt overall very long and slow-paced. The end, however, was very good, and the book was pleasant to read.
While 『誰か』is not one of my favourite detective novel, it made me want to read the other books of the series. To me, the characters are more important than the plot, and I will prefer a slow-paced plot with characters I like rather than a suspenseful story with characters that I cannot understand or with whom I cannot identify.