With strong voice and a haunting story, Tana French has a winner with Broken Harbor. The story follows Mike “Scorcher” Kennedy, an Irish Murder Squad detective, who has an excellent track record of solving murders the honest way.
This case, however, haunts him, and he finds that when he is called out to investigate the murder of Pat Spain and his two young children, and the attempted murder of Jenny Spain, he is forced to face ghosts from his past.
Although Mike is an excellent detective, he finds that this case, which takes place miles outside of Dublin, is in the same location where his mother committed suicide years ago. Because of that, he begins to be rattled early on, and the seemingly idyllic Spain home is surrounded by empty shells-of-houses and riddled with holes in the walls, leaving Mike to wonder what life was really like for this simple family. The case doesn’t seem to make sense, yet, after a lucky break and a lot of hard work, the pieces of the case slowly begin to come together, and Mike believes that he and his rookie partner, Richie Curran, have done the impossible – solved a media saturated case in a matter of days with a solid confession and strong evidence. When Richie makes a simple mistake, however, the entire case (and Mike’s reputation) are threatened.
This mystery-suspense novel is well written and captivating. It is intriguing and even has a surprise twist or two at the ending. While it is a bit long, because of the fully developed characters and the natural dialogue, the story flows quickly and naturally. Broken Harbor is well worth a read if you are a murder mystery fan.