Monday, September 1, 2014

The Secret Place by Tana French

Dublin Murder Squad #5

The photo on the card shows a boy who was found murdered, a year ago, on the grounds of a girls’ boarding school in the leafy suburbs of Dublin. The caption says, I KNOW WHO KILLED HIM.

Detective Stephen Moran has been waiting for his chance to get a foot in the door of Dublin’s Murder Squad—and one morning, sixteen-year-old Holly Mackey brings him this photo. The Secret Place, a board where the girls at St. Kilda’s School can pin up their secrets anonymously, is normally a mishmash of gossip and covert cruelty, but today someone has used it to reignite the stalled investigation into the murder of handsome, popular Chris Harper. Stephen joins forces with the abrasive Detective Antoinette Conway to find out who and why.

But everything they discover leads them back to Holly’s close-knit group of friends and their fierce enemies, a rival clique—and to the tangled web of relationships that bound all the girls to Chris Harper. Every step in their direction turns up the pressure. Antoinette Conway is already suspicious of Stephen’s links to the Mackey family. St. Kilda’s will go a long way to keep murder outside their walls. Holly’s father, Detective Frank Mackey, is circling, ready to pounce if any of the new evidence points toward his daughter. And the private underworld of teenage girls can be more mysterious and more dangerous than either of the detectives imagined.

My Thoughts…

I found it interesting to hear the teenage girl side of the story.    The way they told the tale and how their conversations went made me think back to my days in school.   How I thought I knew my friends so well and that we told each other everything, then the rumors and gossip would start.    I enjoyed that there were two groups, the popular better than everyone else and the wierdo’s.    It was entertaining watching them place the blame on each other all while not really knowing who the actual killer was.  

Throughout the story I had many theories as to who the actual killer was.   Tana French did an excellent job at keeping me guessing and not truly giving away the real killer until last part of the story.   As my first Dublin Murder Squad book I was not familiar with the characters, but this did not slow down my reading and hinder my enjoyment of the story.  It was nice that I could just pick up the book and read without having to learn the background of every character and the history of their relationships.  

I will be looking for more of this series and certainly checking out the past books.   A good mystery is hard to find and I believe this is one of the best I have read in  quite a while.   

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