The Boy Who Fell (Inspector Tom Reynolds #5) by @SpainJoanne ~ In this place, people cover up for each other #IrishCrimeFiction #PoliceProcedural

Author: Jo Spain

Performed by Aoife McMahon

Released: June 2019 by Quercus

Category: Irish Crime Fiction, Police Procedural, Audiobook, Review

In the garden of an abandoned house, Luke Connolly lies broken, dead. The night before, he and his friends partied inside. Nobody fought, everybody else went home safely. And yet, Luke was raped and pushed to his death. His alleged attacker is now in custody.

It’s the night of the the annual Police Ball and DCI Tom Reynolds would rather be anywhere else.

Chief Superintendent Shaun McGuinness is nominating Tom as his replacement after he retires in four weeks. When Natasha McCarthy, head of sexual crimes, approaches him about a case involving a relative who is being held in custody awaiting trial, Tom agrees to look at the case file. Six weeks ago Luke Connolly fell to his death from the third floor window of an abandoned house. Daniel Konaté Jones is accused of raping Luke before pushing him from the window. The problem is Daniel is refusing to deny or confirm the accusation. In fact, he’s refusing to say anything at all.

The house where Luke died, in Little Leaf, Dublin, has been derelict since the violent deaths of a family fifteen years previously. It’s now the meeting place for teenagers who want to smoke, drink, take drugs and indulge in whatever other mischief they can get up to.

The senior investigating officer in the Connolly case is Jackie McCallion. After reading the report, Tom isn’t happy with the hearsay and lack of indisputable proof, despite the DNA results and the terrible situation the Connollys find themselves in. One son dead and the other in hospital with a terminal illness. But still, Tom’s instincts tell him something doesn’t sit right. 

‘The Connollys only have weeks left with Ethan,’ Jackie said. ‘They can’t cope with the media attention all this would bring. They want justice, but they want it without fanfare.’

And on that final sentence, her voice quivered. It unsettled Tom. The situation for the Connollys was appalling. Anybody who’d spent time with them, who’d had to break the news of their son’s death and learned the fate of his twin, couldn’t help but be moved.

Did that in turn mean Jackie McCallion was desperate to help them.

So desperate, she wasn’t doing her job properly?

The question of who pushed Luke is intriguing. His group of friends are an unlikeable and arrogant bunch, certain their privileged lifestyle will counteract any problems they come up against. Daniel was the odd one out, being gay, black and from a poorer background. The impending referendum to legalise same sex marriages in Ireland hasn’t yet been held but some people’s views about same sex relationships and black people will never change.

The Boy Who Fell raises relevant issues which include homophobia, racial prejudice and the belief by some that wealth and standing should afford them influence and special treatment. 

I enjoy Jo Spain’s easy to read writing style. The character driven plot unfolds steadily with twists revealing several suspects and although, as I mentioned, a few characters were less than engaging, the characterisations themselves were spot on. I look forward to Tom’s new role and hope we haven’t seen the last of Shaun McGuinness. 

Book links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US | Hive

Jo Spain is the author of the Inspector Tom Reynolds series. Her first book, top ten bestseller With Our Blessing, was a finalist in the 2015 Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller. The Confession her first standalone thriller, was a number one bestseller and translated all over the world.
Jo is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, a former political advisor in the Irish parliament and former vice-chair of InterTrade Ireland business body.
She now writes novels and screenplays full-time. Her first co-written TV show TAKEN DOWN was broadcast in Ireland in 2018 and bought by international distributors Fremantle.
Jo lives in Dublin with her husband and four young children. In her spare time (she has four children, there is no spare time really) she likes to read. Her favourite authors include Pierre Lemaitre, Jo Nesbo, Liane Moriarty, Fred Vargas and Louise Penny. She also watches TV detective series and was slightly obsessed with The Bridge, Trapped and The Missing.
Jo thinks up her plots on long runs in the woods. Her husband sleeps with one eye open and all her friends have looked at her strangely since she won her publishing deal.

Author links ~ Facebook | Twitter

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