This is the fourth of Tana French’s gripping “Dublin Murder Squad” series and I cannot get enough. When someone asks for book recommendations she is always at the top of my list. I don’t know if it is a fair comparison, but I say that if you have ever enjoyed an episode of any iteration of Law and Order you will like this book, and the whole series.
To be accurate, her books aren’t your traditional “Law and Order” whodunnit format, but rather one of the real meaty arcs that instead focuses in on the detectives. If you are looking for a gripping mystery you might find her books frustrating because the case is often secondary, and in fact, the “who” did it might get solved midway the novel. Her storytelling isn’t really about the big reveal of who did it, but rather the unraveling of the characters who are part of her stories. It is less about the who and more about the why, and I find this critical examination of motivation fascinating. I’m a sucker for character development and she makes that the crux of her stories.
Another neat device is that each book focuses on a different person on the Dublin Murder Squad, but many of the characters crossover in the other novels. A minor character in one story becomes the focus of the next. As with this one, Mick “Scorcher” Kennedy was the hotshot detective in the previous novel, but this time around it is his life and motivation left open and picked apart.
Finally, she always leaves you wanting more. After a French novel, there are always unanswered questions, and this one is no different. She doesn’t tie up every loose end, which leaves you to ponder and makes the story more realistic. You don’t always get the whole picture.
I don’t want to wait to read the next one, but I will because they are just so darn GOOD I am trying to space them out. But it is going to be hard to do so.