Antoinette Conway, the tough, abrasive detective from The Secret Place, is still on the Murder Squad, but only just. She's partnered up with Stephen Moran now, and that's going well - but the rest of her working life isn't. Antoinette doesn't play well with others, and there's a vicious running campaign in the squad to get rid of her.
She and Stephen pull a case that at first looks like a slam dunk lovers' tiff, but gradually they realise there's more going on: someone on their own squad is trying to push them towards the obvious solution, away from nagging questions.
They have to work out whether this is just an escalation in the drive to get rid of her - or whether there's something deeper and darker going on.
©2016 Tana French (P)2016 Hodder & Stoughton
This is convoluted detective novel with false trails and side stories. The main character is Antoinette Conway: a tough detective up against the problems of being a woman in a male-dominated profession. She is unpopular with her colleagues who engage in silly pranks or worse try to jeopardise her work. Her only ally, and professional partner, is detective Steve Moran with whom she strives to get to the truth about a death that at first seems to be an accident but turns out to be murder. Investigations into the female victim’s life reveals several lines of enquiry and possible suspects.
I found the narrative varied in pace and interest. The best scenes are those of interviewing suspects that seem almost in real-time and ably demonstrate interrogation techniques, but the book flags at times with long meandering conversations and side issues. Though categorized as a detective novel, it is just as much about human relationships and what drives behaviour.
The narrator gives Antoinette a strong, gravelly Irish accent that is little different from the male characters and so I often couldn’t tell who was speaking and so found the dialogue confusing at times.
I’ve read four of the author’s other books and think, for example, Broken Harbour and Faithful Places are superior.
marathon listener, very discerning about the narrator quality...
Gosh such a good listen! Avoids so many pitfalls of a tale so reliant on dialogue . The two detectives are brilliant, a woman so tough she'll rust and a likeable junior partner! Great. I don't do many reviews, only for 5 star listens.
Absolutely terrific. Listened non-stop. Tana French is an excellent author, characters are wonderfully drawn, the plot intricate, clever, never letting up. Very very good.
This book worked excellently as an audio book, helped by a terrific reading by Hilda Fay.
A slow burning investigation unfolding through a series of taut interviews, and episodes of paranoiac work situations.
Detailed character portrayals
A good listen
An amazing return to form for Tana French. Her best book yet. Thoroughly enjoyed it and was sorry when it ended. Fascinating characters and a driving plot. Formidable as a crime story but also as a superb novel. Highly recommended.
Tana French has outdone herself. This story twists and turns away from the reader so often and with such suddenness that even when you think you know the full story, you don't.
the story is engaging right from the start, a classic incident room page turner.
However, it's the performance is really excellent.
"LOVED this book!"
I've enjoyed all Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad books, although I'm not usually a crime fiction fan. She has a knack for human portraits and a gift for seeing the intricacies of relationships which elevate the book far above the average "who dunnit". Her plots are full of interesting twists and I love the way she brings back minor characters from previous books to flesh them out in more detail. Can't wait for her next book.
As with all the books I've heard in this series, the performance is outstanding and I'd certainly seek out other narrations by Hilda Fay.
"Great story - Great narration"
The story is riveting, and the characters are engaging. I thought the narration by Hilda Fay was superb - her voice really suited the story.
"A personal disclosure."
The amazingly gifted Tana French draws you into a fantasy world, and since that is what the book is about, in a way it is a (very) partial autobiography. I am mesmerised.
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