Tuesday, September 20, 2016
The Trespasser by Tana French Book Review
I am a HUGE Tana French fan! I started reading her books early 2014 and spaced them out so I'd have something to look forward to every few months. I read her 5th book The Secret Place in March this year and I was devastated that it would be my last French book for a while. Until a few days later I discovered this book, The Trespasser, was coming out! And after finding out that Detective Antoinette Conway, who was partnered up with Detective Stephen Moran in The Secret Place, was the narrator of this book, there was NO way I was waiting to read this book, I had to have it as soon as I could! I read it last month and mentioned it in my reading round up for that month but waited until now to publish my full review on here.
The story starts early one morning, when Antoinette and her partner Stephen Moran are given a case just before they are due to go off shift. Texts on the victim's phone show that she was supposed to have dinner at her house with a man, so the case looks to be a lovers' tiff turned sour; the man lashed out at woman, who fell and smashed her head open. But certain things don't add up. Her best friend alludes to her having another secret boyfriend, the house has been wiped clean and then there's the mysterious phone call that alerted the police to the crime in the first place. Antoinette and Stephen dig deeper and find that this isn't the typical couple’s argument gone wrong. The story kept me hooked right til the end. We start to find out the truth near the end, with 100 pages or so left to go, but there's just so much that could change that I was gripped as I had no idea which way it was going to twist again. French is just so perfect at writing these kind of plots, all these layers that get peeled away until you have the answer in your hand but not the final outcome or consequences.
Antoinette is a tough cookie, she's sarcastic, independent and a little difficult. She usually takes no shit but is finding it hard to fit into the Murder Squad and things keep happening. Not getting information passed on to her, pages in her reports going missing, nasty rumours, silence the second she walks into the squad room. Is it because she's a woman? Is it her race? Is it because she's difficult and awkward to work with? Is her fuck off attitude causing this rift in the squad or is it a result of the squad treating her this way? Either way, Antoinette keeps it to herself, rarely saying anything to her partner Stephen Moran. She's a complex character who has a slight chip on her shoulder, a combination of the fact of never knowing her father or anything about him (except for his ethnicity making her a darker skin tone), growing up poor with a single mother and now being the only woman in the Murder Squad boys club. It was hard to be in her head at times as her issues with not gelling in the Murder Squad has seriously messed with her head and who she trusts. Inside she's a roller coaster of thoughts and emotions. Outside she only ever shows anger, which just adds to her being difficult to work with. But it was also fascinating being in her head and French just nails her voice, I could hear it lifting off the page and into my ear. I really rooted for her and I also loved her relationship with Stephen Moran (which I also enjoyed in The Secret Place). Their partnership is wonderful and I would love to see more of it in other books, which I sadly doubt will ever happen as French has yet to use the same narrator twice. I do hope to see glimpses of them in future books though. I'll be left wondering when the next book will be out and who will be the narrator! If you’re a fan of Tana French and especially Faithful Place and The Likeness then you’ll enjoy this. Pick it up!
I received an e-copy of this book in advance on NetGalley and all thoughts and opinions are my own.