- Paperback: 313 pages
- Publisher: Seventh Street Books (March 3 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1633880001
- ISBN-13: 978-1633880009
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2 x 21 cm
- Shipping Weight: 318 g
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #67,203 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Gun Street Girl: A Detective Sean Duffy Novel Paperback – Mar 3 2015
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Named one of the Best Books of 2015 by the Boston Globe!
A 2016 Audie Award finalist for Best Mystery!
“When it comes to Northern Irish crime fiction, Adrian McKinty forged the path the rest of us follow. The Sean Duffy series is the culmination of a career spent examining our darkest moments, and McKinty is the only crime writer who can do justice to our singular history.”
—STUART NEVILLE, author of The Final Silence
“Gun Street Girl is great; I'm so glad that Adrian McKinty has given readers another novel starring Belfast cop Sean Duffy, whose earlier exploits were described in the terrific Troubles trilogy. Don't miss any of the four….”
—NANCY PEARL, NPR commentator and bestselling author of Book Lust
“Series fans will appreciate the further insight into the fallout from tragic cases, department politics, and war. As usual, there’s plenty of entertaining territorial battling between the dizzying array of law-enforcement agencies acting in Belfast, and Duffy’s investigative skills seem somehow sharpened by his lost hope.”
—BOOKLIST STARRED REVIEW
“The latest Sean Duffy mystery brings back the cop who stars in these dark, intriguing, but still somehow witty novels. His latest is a thrilling, thoroughly fantastic murder mystery with countless twists and turns that take readers to the darkest parts of Belfast and some huge cover-ups within the Irish and British governments.”
—RT BOOK REVIEWS (FOUR STARS – Compelling)
“Mixes a mordant wit and casual, unpredictable violence that vividly portrays a turbulent time…. McKinty is in full command of language, plot, and setting in a terrifying period of history that sometimes seems forgotten. Fans of gritty Northern Irish crime writers such as Stuart Neville, Declan Hughes, and Brian McGilloway will enjoy this talented author.” —LIBRARY JOURNAL STARRED REVIEW
“A grim, gritty but ever-captivating yarn.”
“I had been saddened at the thought that this series had ended. Imagine my delight; McKinty has now written a fourth book…. Read all four. They are phenomenal.”
—THE SUN HERALD, Mississippi
Praise for previous Detective Sean Duffy novels:
"McKinty's novels are...shot through with a smart, crackling humor that manages to be both dark and witty.... Each book is a solid standalone, but it's even better to ride the entire trilogy roller coaster."
"Exceptionally smart police procedurals. . . with [a] gritty, violent Belfast backdrop."
—BOOKLIST STARRED REVIEW
“A dark-humored shamus in the Phillip Marlowe tradition, [Sean Duffy] is . . . buoyed through the murderous chaos by his love of classical, punk, and new-wave music, the Greek philosopher Epicurus, and frothy pints of Guinness.”
—WALL STREET JOURNAL
"I Hear the Sirens in the Street blew my bloody doors off!"
—IAN RANKIN, author of the Inspector Rebus novels
"Sean Duffy is a compelling detective, the evocation of the period is breathtaking and the atmosphere authentically menacing."
—BRIAN McGILLOWAY, New York Times-bestselling author
About the Author
Adrian McKinty is the author of eighteen novels, including the acclaimed Detective Sean Duffy novels. Rain Dogs won the 2017 Edgar® Award for Best Paperback Original. Gun Street Girl was shortlisted for the Anthony, Ned Kelly, and Edgar® Awards. The Cold Cold Ground won the Spinetingler Award. I Hear the Sirens in the Street won the Barry Award and was shortlisted for the Ned Kelly Award. In the Morning I'll Be Gone won the Ned Kelly Award and was selected by the American Library Association as one of the top-10 crime fiction novels of 2014. McKinty is also the author of the standalone historical The Sun Is God. Born and raised in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland, McKinty was called "the best of the new generation of Irish crime novelists" in the Glasgow Herald.
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This time we find Duffy beavering away on behalf of the RUC in his normal insightful manner, but with little prospects of advancement because of his career habit of being at odds with authority. Domestically he is still a Catholic policeman living in a Protestant area where he has developed a surprisingly good relationship with the local paramilitary leader. If anything he seems rather less damaged than in the earlier books, but he retains his enthusiasm for his favourite vices including booze, cigarettes and what he rather euphemistically calls Peruvian Marching Powder.
This time Duffy is working on a case of a wealthy couple who have been shot dead, apparently by their son. However he is not at all happy with the obvious explanations and eventually uncovers far reaching ramifications. This, like the others in the series, is a very accurate portrayal of the Northern Ireland setting with which the author is clearly so familiar and is a highly entertaining book.
Inspector Sean Duffy, the token Catholic in Carrickfergus RUC station, is back. He's 35 & has been dealing with Belfast's criminals & "the Troubles" for 10 years now. His world is one where checking under your car each morning for a mercury bomb is like tying your shoes...an unconscious & unremarkable habit.
He & colleague DS "Crabbie" McCrabban are called to the scene of a double murder. A wealthy businessman & his wife were shot & their 22 year old son is missing. It has all the markings of a domestic situation gone horribly wrong but neither could have predicted just how complicated it will get. Before it's all over, the case will sprout tentacles that reach to unionists, the IRA, american spooks & #10 Downing Street.
While this can be read as a stand-alone, if you haven't read the others do yourself a favour & start at the beginning. You'll get the full back story & have a great time in the process.
Like the rest, this is narrated by Sean. His character is so well developed I swear I could pick him out of a line-up. He's irreverent, sarcastic & smart & many of his comments/thoughts are laugh out loud funny. It provides a much needed balance to the grim reality of this time (1985) when an end to the Troubles wasn't even a concept, let alone on the horizon.
He started out wanting to make a difference. Now, he's resigned to just doing the best he can. Never mind winning the war. He'll settle for taking the odd battle & making it home alive for another day. His humour is a coping mechanism to deal with the endless conflict while denying he'a actually scared spitless.
The story is told in an economical but fluid style of prose that holds your attention while keeping you slightly on edge. Like Sean, we never know where the next threat is coming from. In between the riots & assaults we are treated to scenes that are hilarious (a church sponsored mixer where Sean is viewed as a "dead man walking") & lines so good you stop to read them again (after tasting some coke confiscated from a brothel, Sean describes it as "so pure it was like getting yelled at by God").
Many familiar characters reappear, real & fictional. Kate, his MI5 contact in a previous book, is back to take another stab at poaching him for her team. And 2 new recruits inject some fresh faces into the mix. Real life characters & events lend an authentic tone to the story. Mrs. Thatcher continues to be universally loathed & in an interesting twist, Jerry Adams is tied to the IRA (something he has denied as recently as several weeks ago on "60 Minutes").
Mckinty has given his main character the same address as the house he grew up in & is obviously intimately acquainted with the era. His portrayal is perceptive & informed, tinged with black humour that can provoke giggles at the most inappropriate time. It's an entertaining, fast paced read with a convoluted plot that puts a very human face on this period of Northern Ireland's history. The author adds to this by not shying away from killing off a main character. As in real life, not everyone survived & by the end, Sean's future is unclear.
So puhLEEZE, Mr. McKinty....just one more?