Far from True (Promise Falls Trilogy #2) by @linwood_barclay #crimefiction

Author: Linwood Barclay

Published: September 2016 by Orion

Category: Crime, Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Book Review

After the screen of a run-down drive-in movie theatre collapses and kills four people, the daughter of one of the victims asks private investigator Cal Weaver to look into a recent break-in at her father’s house. Cal discovers a hidden basement room where it’s clear that salacious activities have taken place—as well as evidence of missing DVDs. But his investigation soon becomes more complicated when he realizes it may not be discs the thief was actually interested in….

Far From True picks up the threads of the story where Broken Promise left off. It helped that I read this soon after the first book, there’s a fair number of characters to keep track of and several plot lines. Again the main part of the narrative is in the third person, this time with the first person perspective from Cal Weaver, ex Promise Falls detective who is now a private investigator. 

An explosive opening sets the pace, as the huge screen of the local drive-in movie theatre comes crashing down on the cars in the front rows, killing four people and injuring several more. Initially thought to be a possible terrorist act, or a mistake by the firm contracted to take the screen down the following week, it transpires it was neither of those things.

The daughter of one of the victims asks Cal to investigate a burglary at her father’s house. What they actually find surprises them both and becomes the centre of the story. Detective Barry Duckworth is still investigating previous murders and strange incidents all seemingly connected to the number 23. Sleazy ex-mayor Randal Finley is set on running again in the mayoral election, with help from his unenthusiastic assistant, David Harwood, who only took the job as a last resort. David’s fledgling romance is also proving not to be without its difficulties.

David wasn’t sure he was cut out for this much drama. He’d had more than enough of it with his now late wife, Jan. The whole episode with Marla and her baby had left him shaken. And working with Finley was no bucket of joy, either. His reporting days hadn’t prepared him for this kind of unrelenting stress. He’d never been a war correspondent. He hadn’t been a Woodward or Bernstein. He’d always been a small-town reporter.

When I began the trilogy I wasn’t aware Cal Weaver’s and David Harwood’s stories featured in previous books. It didn’t hamper my reading enjoyment at all but I would probably have read those first if I’d realised. The first book in this trilogy is a must though, before starting Far From True because, as mentioned previously, there are multiple threads and characters to keep track of and it was quite confusing at first. Once the connections were made and I had it all sorted in my mind, it was easy to settle into the story. And what a story! The action is ongoing, and there’s a lot of it for a small town. Several story threads are concluded while others will be carried over into book three.

The narrative is mainly plot driven, with the past and present on a collision course. Lies, drama and secrets abound, the mysterious number 23 appearing in one form or another, seemingly connecting the murders. Compelling writing with believable dialogue, good characters profiles, and enough twists to keep your head in a spin. Nothing is as it appears. Short chapters and alternating perspectives keep the story moving at a pace. So glad I have The Twenty Three, the final instalment, ready and waiting.

Book Links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US 

Linwood Barclay is a former columnist for The Toronto Star and the author of several critically acclaimed novels, including Too Close to Home and No Time for Goodbye, a #1 Sunday Times (UK) bestseller. He lives near Toronto with his wife.

Author links ~ Website | Twitter | Facebook 

13 thoughts on “Far from True (Promise Falls Trilogy #2) by @linwood_barclay #crimefiction

  1. I love these books, Cathy. I’ve just finished his last one (luckily I read them in the right order 😀 ) they are so gripping I couldn’t put it down

    Liked by 1 person

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