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.
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: Jo Spain
Published:June 2017 by Quercus
Category: Irish Crime Fiction, Police Procedural, Suspense, Book Review
Did I know it would come to this? That I was playing Russian Roulette? I would give anything to turn back time and to be with my girls. There is no shot at redemption. I am going to die. The gun is in my eye-line as the second bullet is fired. That’s the one that kills me.
Detective Inspector Tom Reynolds and his wife were enjoying a rare long weekend away. As much as Tom loved his granddaughter it would be a blessing to get good nights uninterrupted sleep. Alas, it wasn’t to be.
Author: Jo Spain
Performed by Aoife McMahon
Published by Quercus and released on Audible May 2017
Category: Crime Fiction, Murder, Suspense, Audiobook, Book Review
It’s true what they say . . . revenge is sweet.
A baby, minutes old, is forcibly taken from its devastated mother.
The body of an elderly woman is found in a Dublin public park in the depths of winter.
With Our Blessing is set in Dublin and introduces Detective Inspector Tom Reynolds in a very powerful and atmospheric story. The gruesome murder and mutilated body of an elderly woman has been discovered in Phoenix Park and it’s a murder designed to send out a specific message.
Author: Dervla McTiernan
Published: March 2019 by Sphere
Category: Irish Crime, Thriller, Suspense, Mystery, Book Review
When Detective Cormac Reilly’s girlfriend Emma stumbles across the victim of a hit and run, he is first on the scene of a murder that would otherwise never have been assigned to him. As Cormac investigates, evidence mounts that the death is linked to a Darcy laboratory and, increasingly, to Emma herself. Cormac is sure she couldn’t be involved, but how well does he really know her? After all, this isn’t the first time Emma’s been accused of murder…
Sergeant Callie O’Halloran is on the edge of exhaustion with working all hours since her promotion. Her home life is suffering and the Henderson case, one of several she’s working on, seems to be losing momentum despite giving it most of her attention.
Author: Sam Blake
Published: May 2016 by Twenty7
Category: Crime Fiction, Police Procedural, Audiobook Review
Twenty-four-year-old Garda Cathy Connolly might be a fearless kick-boxing champion but when she discovers a baby’s bones concealed in the hem of a wedding dress, the case becomes personal.
Garda Cathy (Cat) Connolly is investigating a break in at the house of artist, Zoë Grant, following on the heels of the report of a man lurking in the garden the previous night.