Tuesday, July 24, 2012

(104)Broken Harbor by Tana French

Broken Harbor

Publication Date: July 24, 2012
Pages: 464

It is rare that I find a 464 page book that I can devour in one sitting, but I have learned over the years that Tana French knows how to write a novel that I just can NOT put down!

Broken Harbor is the fourth book in the "Murder Squad" series.  Mick "Scorcher" Kennedy has one of the best close rates in the squad, but it has been a while since he caught a "good one" so when his boss asks him to take the triple murder out in Broken Harbor, he jumps on the case.  And since he will be training the new guy, Richie Curran, he is determined to do everything by the book.

What they discover out at Broken Harbor, a planned community that only got a couple houses sold before the developers went belly-up in the down economy, is enough to bring even the most jaded detective to their knees.   Out of work and down on his luck, Patrick Spain and his wife were discovered brutally stabbed in their kitchen.  Patrick's wife, Jennifer is alive, barely hanging on by a thread, but the rest of the family is gone.  Upstairs, they discover the couple's two young children have also been murdered, smothered as they slept.  As Kennedy and Curran take their first steps through the house a few things catch their eye, like the fact that even though the couple's children were young, they were not young enough to really need baby monitors anymore.  Yet Kennedy & Curran have found five baby monitors in the couple's bedroom.  And there are bizarrely placed holes scattered throughout the whole house that completely baffle the two detectives.   Exactly WHAT was going on in that house and who tried to take out the entire family?  And will they come back to finish the job once they discover that Jennifer Spain survived?

Tana French is pure genius when it comes to setting the scene and developing her characters.  After she got done with Mick Kennedy I felt as if I knew him as well as one of my own brothers. Broken Harbor and her inhabitants are so well described it felt as if I had been transported to the ghost town of a development where the Spain's live.   I truly found myself lost in the story and nothing screams "great book" more than getting lost in the story.

Bottom line, Broken Harbor is what the average murder mystery novels should all want to be when they grow up.  The writing is so precise, so engrossing. The suspense is perfected in a way that leaves you holding your breath and turning pages as fast as your eyes will let you.  I have always enjoyed Tana French's novels, but Broken Harbor just seemed to outshine them all.  Maybe it was just because I was thirsty for a literary masterpiece, but I think Broken Harbor was the best mystery I have read yet this year.  I look forward to hearing what you guys think, be sure to let me know!


Amber @ A Little Pink in the Cornfields said...

I have not read anything by her! I have had In the Woods on my shelf for ages though. I'll have to get to it sometime.

Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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