Praise for Declan Burke: “Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

French Kissies From The USA

It’s a karma thing, probably. The dastardly French cheat Ireland out of their place at the World Cup finals in South Africa, and then crash and burn to a humiliating first-round exit. Meanwhile, Ireland’s very own Tana French is getting all the good vibes going, particularly from US reviewers. To wit:
“While it is a basic readerly instinct to trust the first-person narrator, especially when he’s a police detective, in Ms. French’s novels, the detective-narrators are as much the sources of mystery and danger as they are bringers of light, order and law to the dark world of crime, and the endings are not tidy returns to peace and order. Those who read for the plot may be disappointed by FAITHFUL PLACE, but those who value psychological complexity and vivid characterization, who aren’t afraid to have their generic expectations turned inside out, who like their thrillers with a strong regional and literary savour, owe themselves the pleasure of Tana French.” - The Washington Times

“Some thriller writers burst onto the scene in a sudden blaze of hype, while others bubble under the level of mass awareness for years before gaining a significant following. Two authors who have been steadily attracting fans—but not much fanfare—are Tana French and Dennis Tafoya. Both are likely only to widen their audiences with their latest work.” - Tom Nolan, Wall Street Journal
  Erm, Tom? ‘Not much fanfare’? Do try to keep up …
  Elsewhere, the Courier-Journal had this to say:
“FAITHFUL PLACE is Tana French’s best book yet (readers familiar with IN THE WOODS and THE LIKENESS will recognize this as an incredible feat), a compelling and cutting mystery with the hardscrabble, savage Mackey clan at its heart.”
  Meanwhile, Myles McWeeney at the Irish Independent reckons that the novel is “more a sprawling inner-city Dublin family saga than a thriller in the strictest sense of the word. But that in no way takes away from the power of this enthralling and wonderfully nuanced book. Rosie and Frank’s story, told in flashback, hooks the reader from the beginning, the characters are masterfully drawn, and the author’s ear for Dublin dialogue is pitch-perfect.”
  And here’s Adam Woog in the Seattle Times: “Irish writer Tana French hit the big time with her stunning cop-drama debut, IN THE WOODS and followed it with an equally brilliant book, THE LIKENESS. Both demonstrated French’s gift for merging the best traits of the crime genre with the compassionate insights and nimble prose associated with ‘serious’ literature. A third dazzler, FAITHFUL PLACE, puts Detective Frank Mackey, a supporting actor from THE LIKENESS, front and centre.”
  If you want to hear Tana’s dulcet tones, clickety-click here for an NPR interview conducted by Lynn Neary …
  … and if you fancy reading an excerpt from Chapter One, here’s a flavour courtesy of the New York Times, which kicks off thusly:
My father once told me that the most important thing every man should know is what he would die for. If you don’t know that, he said, what are you worth? Nothing. You’re not a man at all. I was thirteen and he was three quarters of the way into a bottle of Gordon’s finest, but hey, good talk. As far as I recall, he was willing to die a) for Ireland, b) for his mother, who had been dead for ten years, and c) to get that bitch Maggie Thatcher.
  Needless to say, Janet Maslin at the NYT gives “Tana French’s expertly rendered, gripping new novel” the thumbs up …
  So there you have it. FAITHFUL PLACE. What are you waiting for?


Sean Patrick Reardon said...

I have now read enough postive things regarding Tara French's novels that I am going to give IN THE WOODS a read. I remembered TF's name because she was one of three judges for Amazon's next greatest novel contest 2010.

amjadbutt said...
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