John Connolly

A Song of Shadows

"As usual, I ripped through this Connolly novel in just a few sittings..."


Grievously wounded private detective Charlie Parker investigates a case that has its origins in a Nazi concentration camp during the Second World War.

Recovering from a near-fatal shooting and tormented by memories of a world beyond this one, Parker has retreated to the small Maine town of Boreas to recover. There he befriends a widow named Ruth Winter and her young daughter, Amanda. But Ruth has her secrets. She is hiding from the past, and the forces that threaten her have their origins in the Second World War, in a town called Lubko and a concentration camp unlike any other. Old atrocities are about to be unearthed and old sinners will kill to hide their sins. Now Parker is about to risk his life to defend a woman he barely knows, one who fears him almost as much as she fears those who are coming for her.

His enemies believe him to be vulnerable, fearful and solitary. But they are wrong. Parker is far from afraid, and far from alone. For something is emerging from the shadows.

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John Connolly, or JC as he's known in my house is one of those authors. You know, the ones who go straight to the top of your reading pile. Indeed, I no longer ask myself, can he keep it going, cos he just always does. On reading the synopsis and discovering that this time around, Charlie Parker is investigating Nazi war criminals, I was hit with the thought – of course! And wondered why he hadn't gone there before. (At least I can't recall him doing so.) 'Cos our Charlie is the main man when it comes to hunting down real evil and they don't come much nastier than the men and women involved in Hitler's Final Solution. As usual, I ripped through this Connolly novel in just a few sittings, rapt in this wonderful writer's world. NO ONE does atmosphere like JC and I love the way he suggests darker forces at play around us without crossing that line that stops us from suspending our disbelief. Of course, Parker is recovering from serious wounds inflicted on him at the end of 'The Wolf in Winter' and this creates a different kind of vulnerability to the character (and therefore tension for you, the reader) and as you read you wonder, how the hell is he going to face up and beat the bad guys? You'll just have to read the book to find out. I did feel there was a little more exposition this time than one normally gets when reading his books, but that's fine. He's John Connolly.

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