The master of the new noir, Dennis Lehane magnificently evokes the dignity and savagery of working-class Boston in this terrifying tale of darkness and redemption.
Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro's latest client is a prominent Boston psychiatrist running scared from a vengeful Irish mob. The private investigators know something about cold-blooded retribution. Born and bred on the mean streets of blue-collar Dorchester, they've seen the darkness that lives in the hearts of the unfortunate. But an evil for which even they are unprepared is about to strike as secrets long-dormant erupt, setting off a chain of violent murders that will stain everything—including the truth.
In his outstanding second novel, Lehane (whose debut, A Drink Before the War, won a Shamus award) explores horror close to home. Boston PIs Patrick Kenzie and Angie Gennaro agree to help psychiatrist Diandra Warren. Her patient, using the name Moira Kenzie, has said she was abused by Kevin Hurlihy, a sociopathic Irish Mafia henchman who grew up in Angie and Patrick's neighborhood. Hurlihy may have threatened the doctor, who fears that her son, Jason, may be in danger. While Patrick and Angela shadow Jason, another former neighbor, Kara Rider, is found crucified. Sensing a connection, Patrick seeks out a retired cop turned saloonkeeper who recalls a hushed-up crucifixion murder in the neighborhood 20 years ago. The suspect in that killing is in prison, so he can't be murdering again, can he? As Patrick probes painful memories, he faces losing the woman he loves, Grace Cole, who is appalled at the brutality invading their lives. By the time Patrick and Angie realize how the murders relate to their own youth, they are the next targets. The showdown is unpredictable, like the New England autumn which, in Lehane's depiction, is informed by a wind "so chilly and mean it seemed the exhalation of a Puritan god." The story is densely peopled with multidimensional characters; there are no forgettable, walk-on roles on Lehane's stage. Lehane's voice, original, haunting and straight from the heart, places him among that top rank of stylists who enrich the modern mystery novel. Author tour.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Loved, loved loved this book! Read this on recommendation from my son, who is an avid reader of all types of literature. I couldn't put it down. As soon as I was done I downloaded another by Lehane. I am hooked
Book is awesome, ebook editing not so much
I love Lehane's tight plotting, interesting characters so much, I'll overlook the superman jumps of intuition that seem to resolve his Kenzie/Gennaro stories... This is the cruelest of the five I've read, with the highest stakes. My main gripe about the ebook is that the editors seem to have allowed a bug that replaces --ence word ending with Renee. RefeRenee for example. I've noticed it three times in 2/3 of the book; ought to have been noticed/fixed prior to release.