Having left his hometown of Dublin for Los Angeles twenty years ago, P.I. Edward Loy has returned for his mother's funeral. The trip's brought back painful memories, including his father's disappearance before Ed left Dublin. It's also brought back a former schoolmate who wants Ed to find her missing husband, and an old friend who wants Ed to hide a gun for him. As Ed peels back layer after layer of lies and deception, he battles gangsters, lots of people with secrets, and his own past.
With a strong theme about things and people gone lost, in a variety of ways, THE WRONG KIND OF BLOOD is a compelling, somewhat melancholy story about coming to terms with what can't be changed. Entwined with Ed's story are the changes Dublin has undergone over two decades. Author, Declan Hughes, does a wonderful job of describing the Dublin sites that Ed remembers and the sanitized mall-fest he sees now. I almost felt as sorry for Dublin as I did for Ed.
For a while, the increasing body count seemed a little far-fetched. But the more I learned about the area Ed grew up in, the more believable it became to read about folks solving problems through bloodshed. The gangsters are fairly run-of-the-mill thugs, yet other characters are well-rounded. Hughes takes his time tying up the novel's many threads to create a satisfying ending. THE WRONG KIND OF BLOOD is one heck of an absorbing read. Enjoy.