Connolly’s latest Charlie Parker thriller offers a powerful story line that weaves together suspense, mystery and a small touch of the supernatural.
Parker, antihero private investigator, returns for another lap around backwoods Maine, with criminals and the occasional ghostly visitor as uneasy companions. This time Parker gets involved with the case of a missing child, 14-year-old Anna Kore, who disappears from the tiny, isolated town of Pastor’s Bay, leaving behind not a single workable clue. But Charlie hasn’t been called in to help find Anna, although his case dovetails with that of her disappearance. Instead, he’s been hired by an attorney representing a strange and conflicted client who may or may not be involved in the Kore case. Parker, whose own wife and child died and whose latest lover, Rachel, has left and taken their daughter, Sam, along with her, labors under no illusions. He knows the chances of getting Anna back alive are slim to none. But the deeper he gets into the case, the more layers he finds: Everyone from Boston-based mobsters to the FBI want a little piece of this action. Parker is a typical world-weary detective, but he’s made more interesting by the company he keeps: Angel and Louis, strangely mismatched souls who are there when Charlie needs them, cops who neither trust nor respect him and sometimes the odd visitor from a world beyond the living.
An intelligent, plausible thriller, both harrowing and memorable.