“I owe this case. I’ve got beef with this case. I need to shoot it right between the eyes, skin it and stuff it and mount it on my wall, for when my grandkids ask me to tell them stories about way back a million years ago when I used to be a D.”Tana French- The Trespasser
The story opens with a peep into the protagonist’s troubled childhood. From then on is a regular night in an Irish detective’s beat until she receives a call about a young woman’s murder. You follow Detective Antoinette Conway and Stephen Moran, her loyal partner and favourite colleague. Between them, they examine clues, interview witnesses and associates, go through the mental and physical stress of forensics, fight a threat on her life, stay up staking out their suspects and work together against an often unhelpful bureaucracy.
She battles racism and sexism in her daily life with a dedicated pursuit of excellence at work. This creates more enemies for her. She takes it all in stride and refuses to cower in weakness to her detractors. It is this doggedness that leads her and her partner to uncover the heinous truth of the perpetrator’s identity. In the end, one feels the same sense of triumph they did at ending the chase, the rigmarole of interviews, false leads and interrogation. The betrayal inherent in finding the true killer and how much effort was put into making sure an innocent man took the fall is palpable.
I really enjoyed this book in spite of the fact that it was long, winding and exasperating. Difficulties faced by people othered for gender and colour or even being single in a demanding job are brought up close. You would admire her strength in dealing with male colleagues who do all they can to undermine her work and set her up for dismissal from the force. In addition, there was something endearing about the bond she had with her mother, a highway of dark humour and sharp retorts. It was refreshing to see a professional relationship that was rich, full and enjoyable without becoming romantic. Tana gifts readers with an extra; everyday life in Dublin. The suspense was unbearable at some points but was worth it when the time for reveal came.
This book will have you hooked. 4 stars.
It currently is a prize in a giveaway. Hurry and enter the contest. You just might win.