Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Broken Harbor

This is the third novel I've read by Tana French, and I am hooked. I guess you would call her books psychological thrillers/police procedurals, with the Dublin murder squad trying to solve and understand a murder. In this book, the crime is the assault of a young couple and their two children in their house, with the husband and children dead and the wife in critical condition with multiple stab wounds.  Their house, in a town called Brianstown but once known as Broken Harbor, is in an upscale housing development built during a housing boom in Ireland but which is  now mostly unfinished and abandoned. When the police enter the house, they find numerous holes smashed in the walls and ceilings, covered with chicken wire, and video monitors everywhere. The suspect in the case just doesn't seem to fit, despite compelling evidence and a confession.  The detective running the show is Mick Kennedy, who was a minor character in Faithful Place, but here he is in charge of the investigation, along with his rookie partner, Richie. Together they piece together the lives of the victims, interview friends and family and neighbors, and struggle to understand what happened in that house. This is a complicated and slow paced story with many complex issues of financial failure, murder, love, and mental illness. Lurking behind the story is Mick's own family history at Broken Harbor, which is alluded to but not revealed until the end. The author's strength is definitely her development and insight into her characters.

I have read The Likeness and Faithful Place by Tana French, and while I think I liked Faithful Place 
the most,  this one is close.  If you like a detailed and complex police action novel, you might like this one.

1 comment:

  1. It sounds good. Will have to give it a try!

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