Aug 10, 2012

Book Review: Broken Harbor by Tana French

Broken Harbor
Title: Broken Harbor: A Novel by Tana French
Published July 24, 2012; Penguin Group
Genre: police procedural, psychological thriller
Source: publisher

"Under all the paperwork and the politics, this is the job; this is its cool shining heart that I love with every fiber of mine. This case was different. It was running backwards, dragging us with it on some ferocious ebb tide. Every step washed us deeper in black chaos, wrapped us tighter in tendrils of crazy and pulled us downwards." (ch. 15)

About the book: A seasoned detective and his rookie sidekick investigate the murder of a family of four in an out of the way, half finished, and remote seaside housing project outside of Dublin, Ireland.

My comments: This was an intense read for me. The two detectives see the suspects differently and have different ideas about who the real culprit might be. Evidence they painstakingly collect from forensics and interviews point first to one suspect, then another, and then to another suspect, pingponging back and forth from one to the other and back around again. The plot keeps you guessing; the police procedures are enlightening; the characters are personalized, realistic, and engrossing.

Throw in some spooky, creepy scenarios with a hint of the supernatural surrounding the setting, the seaside town of Broken Harbor, which makes nature seem menacing and destructive instead of soothing and calming.

This is one of the best books I've read in the genre.


  1. I usually do not read psychological thrillers but this one does sound interesting!

  2. So glad u liked this. It's one I plan to read in the next 2 months.

  3. Ooh, I need to read this series. My husband read the first and maybe second - he liked them!

  4. Well, I'm glad to hear those good thoughts! I was so mad at the way her first book had no resolution that I haven't picked up another. Thanks for telling me about this one.

  5. I wonder if you have read her other books before this one? I was thinking of reading her first book and then this one but wondered if it really mattered???? I am anxious to start it!

  6. Staci: This book is stand alone. I didn't feel that I missed anything from her previous books.

  7. I love forensics. If it's heavy on that aspect then I am sure I'll like it. I loved her first book.

  8. Staci asked my question - this sounds amazing, but I haven't read French's previous books. Maybe I will just start here!


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