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  1. 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 appears to be a double killing and suicide in deepest East Antrim and quickly getting enmeshed in international sleaze and corruption. Duffy, as is his wont, is torn between personal corruption, doing the right thing and doing what the greater powers suggest. As he flip flops between these paths, he makes enemies and fails to take any path to its conclusion. Gun Street Girl has a great sense not only of time, but also of place. The locations are perfectly described and create a sense of history as so much has changed since the 1985 setting. There are also forays to Oxford and Ayr which capture the places perfectly. One thing that I had not fully appreciated from previous Sean Duffy novels is that the titles all come from Tom Waits songs. Gun Street Girl is too obvious to miss, especially when you know the fifth is called Rain Dogs. Knowing this makes you appreciate Duffy's musical taste all the more. A man who shares my tastes in music, whisky and literature can't be all that bad, even if he is a Peeler. I am glad to have read Gun Street Girl and look forward to reading Rain Dogs very much. ****0
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