Detective Chief Superintendent Frankie Sheehan does not wish to linger on the grisly scene before her eyes. Two mutilated corpses. In a church. In Clontarf. Her profiling background screams one fact: this is just the beginning of a sickening message.
Meanwhile, a 17-year-old case is playing out on a TV documentary, the convicted professing his innocence and historical police errors being exposed daily in the media. Frankie’s superior, commissioner Donna Hegarty, makes no bones about who she expects to clean things up – both in terms of past mishandlings and the present murders.
But not everyone working the cases wants the truth to come out. And the corridors of power have their own vested interest. Soon Frankie pinpoints just what is making her so nervous: the fact that anyone could be the next victim when justice is the killer.
I first read Olivia’s debut after attending an author event where she talked about Too Close To Breathe. I loved the premise and Frankie Sheehan sounded like a bad-ass of a character. The debut was a fantastic read and I have waited with baited breath for the sequel.
I was so thrilled when I was sent an advance copy. I couldn’t wait to get stuck in, though I opened the book with trepidation, what happens if it didn’t live up to my lofty expectations?
A few pages in, and no chance of that happening. It’s like pulling up a chair to meet with an old friend.
The characters in the story are so well written. I already loved DCS Frankie Sheehan. She is so real; you feel everything she does; the highs, the lows, the frustration and the joy of a breakthrough. Baz, her new partner, is an excellent addition to the action. He is likeable and almost acts as the medium between protagonist Frankie and the reader, a sounding board of types.
And as for the baddies, goodness me! Olivia Kiernan can write a monster! At one stage, I had rage tears in my eyes (when you read it, I’m sure you’ll know which part I’m talking about.) She can also write intriguing fringe characters to pull your accusing finger towards. I loved the way I had no idea who was guilty until Frankie solved it herself.
The main story line melded well with the subplot and was interesting throughout. The setting of Clontarf, near Dublin, has a noir-ish setting to it and is perfect for the story. Perpetually drizzy and dark. Ireland in a nutshell!
I can not big this book up enough. It is so well written, Olivia really does transport you to that world with her descriptions and imagery. I can’t wait to see what Frankie gets up to next.
A massive thank you to Olivia for continuing to thrill me, riverrun books for publishing and to Susan Armstrong for sending me the advance copy.
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