Killer Nashville Book of the Day
Rain Dogs by Adrian McKinty
Reviewed by M. K. Sealy
Thanks to Rain Dogs (Seventh Street Books), Adrian McKinty’s latest installment of his Detective Sean Duffy novels, Northern Irish crime fiction has firmly established itself as one of my preferred genres. Fast-paced and riveting throughout the entire novel, Rain Dogs has elegant dialogue and descriptions that immediately pull readers into the many beautifully described locations. McKinty, with his knowledge and experience, was able to create an intimate, engaging world that had me feeling as though I had once visited Carrickfergus Castle in a dream.
Additionally, McKinty has crafted a believable detective with believable struggles—with Detective Sean Duffy, readers quickly come to realize that solving the crime is only half of the equation. Duffy has had to deal with several cases that he solved, but was unable to take to court. McKinty dabbles not in the realm of glamorized crime fiction; instead, he creates a gritty, true-to-life crime-solving atmosphere. The inclusion of realistic struggles in addition to the larger-than-life feeling of the plot creates a dynamism that had me turning the pages as quickly as possible, as I became more familiar with Detective Duffy and the difficulties he faces throughout the novel.
When is a suicide not a suicide? has been one of the most familiar themes of crime fiction, yet, with Detective Duffy, McKinty breathes new life into a tired plot device. When Detective Duffy becomes involved in an investigation into a crime that is not at all what it seems (as fictional crimes rarely are), readers are dragged quickly and deeply into McKinty’s world. With his settings, characters, and the motivation that sits on the breastbone of those characters, McKinty creates a world that is rooted in reality, but that is enveloping enough for readers to forget their own.
M. K. Sealy earned a Bachelor of Arts in English with an emphasis in literature from a Nashville university. She is a copyeditor for a Nashville-based publication, but also writes poetry, fiction, and is currently attempting a screenplay, all while working to obtain a Master of Education.
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