Diego Lafuente’s personal blog

May 9, 2007

Ripley's Game (2002)


"The perfect crime does not exist," Tom told Reeves. "Believing that it does is just a parlor game. Of course, many murders go unsolved, but that's quite different."

And we're back with Mr. Tom Ripley in another story that Mrs. Highsmith dedicated to the saga: Ripley's Game (2002). The book tells another story of this psychopathic master of deception, although this time his participation is only partial. In the quoted passage, Tom begins talking about crimes with an acquaintance with whom he maintains illegal business. This acquaintance asks Tom for a favor: to "kill one or two mafiosi" to generate a fight between two Italian families. Although the booty is tempting and very tempting for his current financial status, Tom refuses to do the job, but still decides not to fail this person who helped him in times of need.

This is where Tom brings out his Machiavellian side and finds a person capable of doing it: Jonathan Trevanny, an honest and poor man who suffers from leukemia, is undoubtedly the person Ripley chooses to do this job: a man who, in an extreme case, would do whatever it takes to save his family when he dies.

This story will take you through the landscapes of Germany, Holland, and Paris, Ripley's favorite place, where he moves pieces from his prized Belle Ombre. At times, I don't know if those who have read stories of Tom Ripley have experienced a feeling of wanting nothing to happen to him, to come out on top. It's as if we agree with the fantasy of being criminals like him.

Of all the Ripley saga, this book does not shine as the first or the previous one: The Talented Mr. Ripley. I read another book, which I will comment on later. This time, it's a more substantial, more paranoid story of Tom Ripley: Ripley Under Ground.

By the way, there is a movie starring John Malkovich that is based on the book, although its title is Ripley's Game.

Suspense. Patricia Highsmith. Editorial Anagrama S.L., 1982. ISBN: 84-339-3015-X. Spanish. Original title in English: Ripley's Game.