Thursday, May 29, 2014
Review of In the Morning I’ll Be Gone by Adrian McKinty (Serpent’s Tail, 2014)
In the Morning I’ll Be Gone is the third book in the Duffy trilogy. It can be read as a standalone, but I’d recommend reading the earlier two instalments in this excellent series. In my view this is McKinty’s strongest book of the one's I've read). It hits all the bases - strong voice and prose; very good sense of place and history that interweaves real events and people; nice characterisation and interplay between characters; and a well worked plot. What sets this apart from his previous work is the latter. McKinty has always been a good plotter, but in In The Morning I’ll be Gone he entwines two compelling stories to great effect. At one level the tale is a straightforward thriller - Duffy is running against the clock to try and track down an IRA master bomb-maker, Dermot McCann. The twist is that McKinty inserts a cold case locked room mystery into the heart of the novel, one that reconnects him with a family from his past. Duffy thus ends up undertaking a traditional police procedural investigation that involves patient detection framed within a wider case that demands more urgency. Both cases are very well told and enfolded, leading to a clever and interesting climax. It takes a skilled writer to convincingly insert a character into real history and McKinty pulls it off with aplomb. An excellent conclusion to the trilogy and highly recommended.