This series starter from McKinty (Fifty Grand) introduces hard-boiled but likable Det. Sgt. Sean Duffy, a Catholic who remains brashly, winningly sardonic even under the pressure of 1981 Belfast's overwhelmingly Protestant police force. With the hunger strikes ongoing, Duffy tries to prove himself by finding an apparent serial killer targeting gay men, but is impeded by Northern Ireland's revolution-racked but socially conservative culture. As Duffy tries to decipher gnomic clues involving opera and mythology, he begins to suspect that the suicide of a hunger striker's wife links the apparently apolitical murders to the equally ruthless paramilitary and IRA factions. Though an anachronistic tone occasionally jars with the period atmosphere provided by carefully observed detail and cameos from the likes of Gerry Adams, the deft mix of noirish melancholy with express-train pacing and blockbuster-ready action enticingly sets the stage for Duffy's future adventures. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 12/03/2012 Release date: 11/01/2012 Genre: Fiction
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