Sunday, August 23, 2015

In the Woods (Not Literally, This Time)

Here's another book I picked up recently and decided to wedge in to this year's reading list (like many things in my life, chalk it up to a Chambersburg thrift store).  Part of the attraction was that it's set in Dublin and its suburbs.  And the other attraction is that every once in a while I just have a hankering for a good detective novel.  Plus, this one's set up is pretty engaging, when you read the back cover.

What I wasn't expecting was the quality of the writing.  Tana French is good!   And funny!  She's got a sly way with it.  She has great adjectives.  She describes someone's voice as "Daffy Duck with a Donegal accent," for pete's sake.  French is good at character development, too, because at the heart of this mystery, she's really exploring the personalities of and relationship between the two lead detectives.

There are two mysteries in this book:  one based in Detective Ryan's past, and the one he's investigating in the present.  We do get an answer - terrifying and unsatisfactory as it may be - to the present-day mystery.  The past mystery, though, that one's handled in a more artful and subjective manner, and we come, along with Detective Ryan, to accept that we'll never know what happened.  Considering I was afraid the book would go all Shutter Island on me, that's a relief, actually.

The whole shebang, in all its aspects, is just handled very well.

Final call:

Aaaaaaaand now I have more books to read, because I found out that this is the first book in the Dublin Murder Squad series.  A wonderful problem to have!

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