Besides incessant listening to audiobooks, I also read on my Kindle at night, birdwatch, garden (roses, daylilies), and do genealogy.
Other names for this review I considered are "Talk, talk, talk, talk, talk", or maybe "Drowning in Irish vitriol and angst", or more simply, "Ouch".
I really enjoyed the two previous Tana French books. This book was a different story for me. I found this mystery novel had very little action, and I knew who-done-it early on. The great majority of this book involved conversations that went on and on and involved the most bitter dialogue and vitriol I have experienced in a book. First off, if I had grown up in such a sick and bitter family, I would not want to listen to these diatribes for nearly the entire book. Luckily, I did not grow up in such a family, and I still did not want to listen to such animosity for so many hours. I could feel my blood pressure, which is usually very low, rising as the family members spouted hatred at each other. Enough is enough! The story, the mystery of it, was lost in dialogue and character development. Interestingly enough, our main character, Frank, who thought he escaped his family's grip for 22 years, exhibited just as much hostility as his parents and older brother had toward one other.
Despite my complaints, I did listen to this book all the way through. I am not sure if I kept coming back to it because I enjoyed it in an odd way or I just wanted to have it be finished. I do think French is a master of character development and dialogue, but she got lost in both here to the detriment of the story, which purports to be a mystery. The ending was very abrupt. I was actually shocked that it was done and so much which would have tied up loose strings was just left out. But again, this book really is not about what happened.
On a more positive side, the narrator, Tim Gerard Reynolds, did a masterful job of capturing the vitriolic dialogue. I can just imgine him coming away from each narration session with a splitting headache.
I've listened to all 4 of the Tana French Dublin Murder Squad novels and really enjoyed them all. Faithful Place is special though.
To me it was the most personal, had the greatest depth of insight into Irish culture among the classes and shows Frank Mackey as he tries to balance all his familial emotions along with his professionalism.
What I like most about this audiobook is the extensive amount of dialogue between the characters. To an American, it was 'only grand' to hear the Irish forms of expressions and use of the language. 'Am I right?'
Each Tana French audiobook used a different narrator and Tim Reynolds was the best of them with Stephen Hogan's narration on 'Broken Harbor' my 2nd favorite.
The story was a great one with many twists and turns and this one will definitely keep you guessing to the very end.
It's a no-brainer....pick up 'Faithful Place'.
I was interested to learn who, how, and why, but I wasn’t emotionally engaged. Part of the story is Frank recalling his life growing up in Faithful Place. It’s sad and depressing because his parents were horrible. Part of the story is Frank investigating by talking to many people. Part of the story is Frank’s love and relationship with his 9-year-old daughter Holly and his ex-wife Olivia. This was not as entertaining as I hoped. I think of Harry (the detective in Michael Connelly novels) who fascinates me. I love watching Harry investigate and do unexpected things, with unexpected results. Frank didn’t do that for me. He was just a regular guy who escaped his poverty and now he’s a good cop. There was nothing special about watching him. This book is for someone who loves mysteries and would enjoy the Irish setting. It’s told in first person by Frank. We don’t see other points of view. I think it’s harder to have suspense and entertainment when staying 100% first person. This book was ok, but it wasn’t the best for me.
I wanted an epilogue. Frank learns who the killer is, but the evidence may be weak. I wanted to see how it worked out in the courts and if the killer was convicted.
I’m hesitant to fault the author for this, but she used a lot of cliches. They’ve not bothered me with other authors, but here they felt overused and repetitive. Examples: end of story, at the end of the day, back in the day, fair enough, live in a glass house, get the h*** out of dodge. Frank also called his daughter so many different terms of endearment that it may have been too much for me. But it could just be me, I’m not used to it.
This is the author’s third novel. She won four awards for her first novel “In the Woods.” I didn’t want to read it because reviewers said that the mystery was not solved and the villain was not caught. I don’t want unsolved books. Some reviewers think her second book “The Likeness” was best of the three. I don’t know. I didn’t read it.
Ending: mystery is solved, but I felt sadness and compassion for the killer and others in that environment.
The narrator Tim Gerard Reynolds was ok. He had thick Irish accent which was fitting for the main character Frank.
Addicted to Audible!
I have nothing but good things to say about this book. The characters are real, believable and very well developed, the dysfunctional family all too real,and the reader AMAZING, I could listen to his voice all day! It must be my Irish ancestry kicking in! I think the imperfect ending was perfect for this book -
I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!
...excellent narration. Tana French is not as good at this as Adrian McKinty, but she is very good. Tim Gerard Reynolds is not as good as Gerard Doyle, but he is excellent.
Once was enough- but it was a great story.
If you liked any of the Dublin Murder Squad stories, this fits right in and is the best so far. Excellent series, if you liked the Pedergast series, you'll like this as well.
Any scene with the family is riveting and hilarious.
It’s surprisingly funny, which fits in well with the character of Frank, if you’ve gotten a glimpse of him in the prior books. Very witty. Also, the performance is excellent. One narrator, who manages to make every voice distinct. He’s great on the female characters as well and manages to make them all unique without sounding like a raspy whisper.
I am amazed by Tana French's ability to get inside the heads of keenly different characters such as Rob (In The Woods), Cassie (The Likeness), and now Frank. The narrator, Tim Gerard Reynolds, was spot-on. It was almost as if he had listened to the The Likeness and drew from that narrator's rendition of Frank, embellishing and deepening the character. As with French's other novels, you dive deep into the mind of the main character, the narrator of the story. That her stories are in first-person make it impossible to not feel yourself go under. And she doesn't offer neatly tied up endings where everyone goes home satisfied. Even if the crime is "solved," there's little satisfaction in it. Lives are turned upside down, relationships comes near to ruin. Frank, who had been avoiding his family for ages, gets brought back into the fold with the discovery of a suitcase that had belonged to his first love: a young woman with whom he was planning to run away with, many, many years before. He had always assumed that she had left without him, and now he's determined to find out what really happened to her. The discovery of the suitcase, and Frank's insistence on digging about for an explanation, precipitates another murder, this one much too close to home. Frank's relationship with his family is a huge part of this psychological drama, with all the resentment, responsibility, sense of duty, near-hatred, and grudging affection that comes with it.
Since Ms. French's three novels have overlapping characters, but different narrators, I can't wait to see who will be the narrator for the next novel.
Having read her previous novels, I had high expectations for Ms. French and was not disappointed. The characters were believable, the dialogue sharp and the plot kept me guessing. The narrator captures the flavor of the patois with his Irish brogue (the story is set in Dublin). I've found my new favorite mystery novelist!
Short, Simple, No Spoilers
If you like mysteries, this book has an street-smart main character/detective. He looks into the disappearance and possible murder of his first love. I guessed early in the book who did it, so was not excited or surprised by the ending. The detail is rich, yet I wish the editor had made French narrow it down by 2 hrs (and whatever page amount that equals). Recommend to friends who enjoy crime dramas. Not my cup of tea (pardon the pun).
Light in August, Faulkner
Reynolds does a splendid job of switching between the different voices and truly embodies the character of Francis. Love the brogue.
I believe a reviewer should finish a book before submitting a review. What do you think?
This book will hold your interest throughout and although the narrator was not as consistent as I wished (not as wonderful as Gerard Doyle) he did a fine job. I've downloaded a string of novels set in Dublin and I've loved them all. This one stands alone and is well worth a credit.