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Found 9 results

  1. You become part of the Chain when your child is kidnapped. To get your child back, you have to pay a ransom, then identify and kidnap the next link in the Chain. Only when the next link kidnaps the link after that do you get your child back. And if your chosen link in the Chain breaks - by speaking to law enforcement or getting cold feet - you have to clean up the mess and form a new link. Even if the Chain breaks weeks or months later, you might have to get back into the field of play. Once you are in the Chain, you can never be free. This is all very implausible. But when you think it th
  2. Inspector Sean Duffy, token Catholic in the Carrickfergus RUC, is no stranger to murder. Rain Dogs is his fifth outing. In the preceding four novels, he has committed a long list of transgressions, has fallen out with many colleagues and most if his near neighbours have been caught up in previous investigations. This creates a fair amount of baggage that has to be disposed of at the start of each subsequent novel. One particular feature of Sean Duffy’s previous novels is the link between Carrickfergus crime and the big political picture. We have previously had the Brighton bombing, John de
  3. This is the fourth Sean Duffy police procedural and it's the point where something really clicked for me. The series weaves real life, historic events into a parochial, Carrickfergus based crime spree. There is invention and, as Adrian McKinley notes in the epilogue, he has compressed events so they unfold quickly when in real life they were slow burning. But the effortless placing of these newsworthy events into a fictitious plot is really unusual. What felt uncomfortable in the first three novels now just feels right. So in this one, we find Inspector Sean Duffy investigating what appea
  4. The Sun Is God is an odd novel on a couple of fronts. Firstly, it is written by Adrian McKinty, who is best known for writing novels about fictional crimes set in Ireland or the United States in contemporary times or the recent past. There is usually a high body count and the narrative darts back and forth between the police procedural and the detective’s personal life. But this is a fictionalisation of a true crime from 1906 in German New Guinea, wherever that is (actually part of PNG today). Aside from the prelude, there’s only one body and precious little policing. Secondly, the pacing
  5. In The Morning is a lurid, over the top police procedural set in 1980s Northern Ireland. Our hero, Sean Duffy, has been busted down to sergeant and has been posted to the South Armagh border due to past indiscretions Sean is not happy, despite the helicopter rides. In a roundabout way - and without giving too much away - Sean Duffy finds himself given one last chance to prove himself. He is put on a mission to find a missing man. This gets him out of Armagh and back knocking on doors of Derry Housing Executive flats and making furtive trips across to Donegal. So far so good. But then Duffy ge
  6. Adrian McKinty is a mean storyteller. He has something that makes the reader want to turn the page, want to read just one more chapter. He creates an eerie atmosphere and tension in the right places. How he does this is a bit of a mystery since his stories seem to have plots full of holes and anachronisms bursting forth at every opportunity. In Sirens, we join up again with Sean Duffy, now a Detective Inspector in Carrick CID. And now it's 1982 - the Falklands War. And, more significantly, the brief period of production of a luxury sports car in Northern Ireland - the DeLorean DMC12. Happy
  7. Northern Ireland has never been terribly liberal. In particular, sexual minorities have had a very tough time and until the last few years (if even now) it was not possible for an openly gay man to hold any position of status. So, in 1981, amidst the backdrop of the Hunger Strikes, we are supposed to believe in a serial killer who is identifying and murdering gay men in the greater Carrickfergus region (Carrickfergus being little more than two streets and a castle). And sent in to investigate the murders is Detective Sergeant (yes, Sergeant) Sean Duffy. Duffy is a Catholic policeman - quit
  8. [i received a free review copy of this book through the Amazon Vine programme] Adrian McKinty specialises in crime novels where baddies rise up from the pavements at every turn and where the bodies pile up in mounds. In The Bloomsday Dead, we find Michael Forsythe - hero of two previous McKinty outings - holed up in Lima trying to hide from his enemies. And he has plenty of enemies - the kith and kin of those he has killed or conned in previous adventures. Forsythe is tracked down by Bridget Callaghan, a former lover, former adversary whose boyfriend Forsythe had killed way back in
  9. After a few pages of this I nearly didn't bother. A Northern Irish teenage lad gets his dole stopped after he's pictured on the front page of the Belfast Telegraph doing some cash-in-hand work for the glaziers after a bomb explosion. Abruptly, we're in Harlem where he's wangled a deal as a general dogsbody to some mid-level Irish crime hoodlum. So far it sounds good, but it's told in first person past-tense, and many times he does a flash-forward. Like this, as he's chatting up a girl: And we're only on page 41. I'm not sure I like the style, letting us know explicitly what's goin
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