If you are struggling with a book, and Lines of Fate is just that, then the perfect alternative is a great thriller.
This is one of the 75 books written by Georges Simenon and it develops the character of Maigret's wife. Not hugely but more than in the other books I have read and she plays a pivotal role in helping sole the crime.
There is a book binder waiting in prison to find out if he is going to be charged on the basis of an anonymous tip-off that he burnt a body in his incinerator. But there is something else going on with Maigret being hounded in the press by the book binder's lawyer.
But the unshakable detective not only gets a grip on the case but starts to take the initiative. But you still feel the bookbinder is innocent and the real story lies elsewhere.