I would like to thank Emily Glenister and The Dome Press, for inviting me to take part in this blog tour, and for supplying me with an ARC.
This is the first book that I have read by Brian McGilloway, but I’m sure it won’t be the last, I wasn’t sure whether I would be able to focus on reading at this time, but I picked this book up late one afternoon and finished it the following morning, I was hooked from start to finish.
Told in a dual timeline, but in a slightly different way, as each chapter ended, the first line of the following chapter started similar to how the last one ended but either in the past or present, alternating each chapter. It was so cleverly done and really helped the story flow seemlessly from past to present.
In the opening chapter Hugh, Karen and Tony kill are burying Martin Kelly but why? Hugh is the only one of the three that has killed before. It is agreed at that time that there will never be any mention of this act ever. After they have done this they all go their separate ways until they are called together thirty years later, haunted by what they had done all those years earlier.
The main story follows Tony, at the beginning he is home from Belfast university after his younger brother Danny has been killed by an Army Land Rover after an attack during the conflict in Northern Ireland. The driver hadn’t even stopped, Danny had just been walking home. At the funeral Tony is approached by Sean Duggan, when they get home Tony’s father asks him what Duggan wanted, he tells Tony to stay away from him. But Tony doesn’t understand why his father doesn’t want retribution for the death of Danny.
Tony is sent Scotland, where he trains as a teacher. He returned to Ireland after he qualified. Thirty years later now widowed, his wife had died just under a year earlier. The story centres on how Tony got involved with a group of activists, who enlisted him at a time that he wanted to see justice served for his brother, how he met and had a short lived relationship with Karen even though they both had deep feelings for each other, it was what they did that split them apart.
Thirty years later, Tony is intrigued to meet Hugh and Karen again, more so Karen, he had never forgotten her, he wondered how much she will have changed. They have been called back to Scotland, by Duggan to reveal where the body of Martin Kelly is, in order to give the family closure. As the tale unravels we find out what led to Martin’s death. How Tony and Karen were to an extent drawn into being involved in the conflicts in Northern Ireland, and the choices they made back then. Choices that would haunt them.
This is at times a very dark read, showing how easy it is to get led into what at the time seems like small choices, and actions, but they lead into far bigger consequences, and the impact that can have on their lives forever. I found it engrossing, the characters are relatable, believable, the story flows so well keeping the reader completely engaged throughout the whole book.
This is a definite 5⭐️ read, that I would recommend to anyone, who likes a story with complex characters, along with a powerful and moving storyline. With a moving ending.
Check out what some of the other bloggers on the tour have to say about this book.
Tony, Hugh and Karen thought they’d seen the last of each other thirty years ago. Half a lifetime has passed and memories have been buried. But when they are asked to reunite – to lay ghosts to rest for the good of the future – they all have their own reasons to agree. As they take the ferry from Northern Ireland to Scotland the past is brought into terrible focus – some things are impossible to leave behind.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brian McGilloway is the New York Times bestselling author of the critically acclaimed Inspector Benedict Devlin and DS Lucy Black series.
His first novel, Borderlands, published by Macmillan New Writing, was shortlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger 2007 and was hailed by The Times as “one of (2007’s) most impressive debuts”.The second, Gallows Lane, was shortlisted for both the 2009 Irish Book Awards/Ireland AM Crime Novel of the Year and Theakston’s Old Peculiar Crime Novel of the year 2010. Bleed A River Deep, the third Devlin novel, was selected by Publishers Weekly as one of their Best Books of 2010.
Brian’s fifth novel, Little Girl Lost, which introduced a new series featuring DS Lucy Black, won the University of Ulster’s McCrea Literary Award in 2011 and was a New York Times bestseller in the US and a No.1 Bestseller in the UK. The follow up novel, Hunt, was published in late 2013 in the UK and Ireland by Constable and Robinson, and was published in the USA under the title Someone You Know. The third Lucy Black novel was published in 2015 in the UK and Ireland as Preserve The Dead and in the USA under the title The Forgotten Ones. His ninth novel, Bad Blood, the fourth in the Lucy Black series, was published in 2017.
In 2014, Brian won BBC NI’s Tony Doyle Award for his screenplay, Little Emperors, an award, which saw him become Writer In Residence with BBC NI. Little Emperors is currently in development with Two Cities Television and BBC NI.