Book review: The Island by Adrian McKinty

Saturday, May 21, 2022 Permalink

The Island by Adrian McKinty has been getting a lot of attention from well-respected authors and publishing industry types, and it’s very much deserved. His last standalone, The Chain, was equally well-received, winning Ned Kelly and Barry Awards on its release.

The Island has probably given me a better understanding of the type of writer he is. It’s certainly action-packed. It’s exciting. It’s fast paced. There’s some depth to the characters, though more to our protagonists than our antagonists. It reminded me very much of action-packed reads by Gregg Hurwitz and the recent borderline horror reads by Gabriel Bergmoser.

four-stars

Book review: The Chain by Adrian McKinty

Sunday, July 7, 2019 Permalink

There is currently a LOT of hype around The Chain by Adrian McKinty. I keep seeing articles on social media about the film rights of a book written by an Uber driver sold for a seven figure sum.

There’s actually an interesting note in the back of this book from McKinty about life as a writer. He’s got his successful Sean Duffy series under his belt but it’s a reminder that many seemingly-successful creatives (authors and the like) don’t actually earn much from their craft. Most have other jobs and alternative sources of income. Which makes me feel a bit grumpy about some idiotic athletes who earn gazillions.

But enough of my ranting. Let’s get down to it cos this standalone by McKinty is (#spoileralert) certainly worth all of the praise it’s getting. I wasn’t sure I was going to be enamoured but I was gobsmacked at how ‘real’ it all felt from the opening lines.

four-half-stars

Book review: Rain Dogs by Adrian McKinty

Saturday, January 2, 2016 Permalink

I was a latecomer to the work of Adrian McKinty, only reading his early 2015 novel Gun Street Girl a few months ago. It was a book I very much enjoyed and in that book review I mentioned the series featuring Detective Sean Duffy—a Catholic cop in the Protestant RUC (Royal Ulster Constabulary) and set in Belfast in the 1980s—was a reminder of a time in history I’m embarrassed to say I’d almost forgotten.

Religious and ethnic wars have moved on since then but McKinty’s series brings back a lot of memories for me (as a teenager in the 80s), and he’s continuing Duffy’s escapades in his latest novel (the fifth in the series), Rain Dogs.

four-stars

Book review: Gun Street Girl by Adrian McKinty

Saturday, August 22, 2015 Permalink

It may not surprise you to know that there appears to be no end to my ignorance. Though a self-professed lover of crime fiction (mysteries, thrillers, suspense novels, police procedurals etc) I continue to stumble across local authors with established repertoires and international reputations.

I blame my pre-2014 antipathy towards Aussie books for this and am trying to look on the bright side…. I have a wealth of already-published reading fodder on which to feast! When I get time.

Book review: Day’s End by Garry Disher

Friday, October 28, 2022 Permalink

Consolation by Garry Disher was the first book I’d read by the respected and renowned Australian author. It was the third book in his Constable Paul Hirschhausen (Hirsch) series and had won the 2021 Ned Kelly award for Best Crime Fiction in 2021. Disher came highly recommended, as did Consolation. And though I enjoyed it, I didn’t love it. I suspect my expectations were a tad high and though really liked Hirsch, it featured one of my pet hates – having multiple plots that don’t mesh or otherwise merge conveniently (though not logically) at the end.

Nevertheless, I very happily dug into Day’s End, the fourth in the series and enjoyed it more than its predecessor.

four-stars

Book review: Everyone In My Family Has Killed Someone by Benjamin Stevenson

Saturday, April 2, 2022 Permalink

In naming his third novel Everyone In My Family Has Killed Someone, I think Benjamin Stevenson might have been attempting to rival Adrian McKinty’s Police at the Station and They Don’t Look Friendly. When it comes to book title length I mean!

I’ve very much enjoyed Stevenson’s previous novels, Greenlight and Either Side of Midnight. They both featured a crime documentary-maker and were set in TV land. The lengthily named Everyone In My Family Has Killed Someone is a departure, but almost certainly my favourite (of his) to date and I can’t imagine it not being one of my favourite books of the year. And that’s all because of its telling.

four-half-stars

Book review: The Game by Scott Kershaw

Sunday, March 27, 2022 Permalink

The Game by Scott Kershaw is a thriller that will keep readers pondering not just the ‘who’ but the ‘why’ as well. I had visions of Adrian McKinty’s The Chain when I read the blurb… someone literally playing games with those who don’t understand how they’ve become involved but have no way of escaping other than playing along.

three-half-stars

Book review: Kill A Stranger by Simon Kernick

Sunday, December 20, 2020 Permalink

When I read the blurb for Kill A Stranger by Simon Kernick I was slightly worried it would be similar to The Chain by Adrian McKinty, which required a series of people to kidnap a child, so they can get their own child returned – a pay-it-forward concept if you like. However… that wasn’t the case which was a relief.

It reminded me a little of Louise Candlish’s popular The Other Passenger because parts of the novel are told in second person – which we discover – are actually our characters sharing their experiences with the police. So the events of the book are predominantly unfolding via police interviews.

four-stars