The Secret Place by Tana French {Beth’s Review}

Posted 25 March, 2015 by Beth / 1 Comment

The Secret Place by Tana French {Beth’s Review}The Secret Place by Tana French
Genres: Fiction, Mystery & Detective, Thrillers
Pages: 464

The sensational new novel from “one of the most talented crime writers alive” (The Washington Post) The photo on the card shows a boy who was found murdered, a year ago, on the grounds of a girls’ boarding school in the leafy suburbs of Dublin. The caption saysI KNOW WHO KILLED HIM. Detective Stephen Moran has been waiting for his chance to get a foot in the door of Dublin’s Murder Squad—and one morning, sixteen-year-old Holly Mackey brings him this photo. “The Secret Place,” a board where the girls at St. Kilda’s School can pin up their secrets anonymously, is normally a mishmash of gossip and covert cruelty, but today someone has used it to reignite the stalled investigation into the murder of handsome, popular Chris Harper. Stephen joins forces with the abrasive Detective Antoinette Conway to find out who and why. But everything they discover leads them back to Holly’s close-knit group of friends and their fierce enemies, a rival clique—and to the tangled web of relationships that bound all the girls to Chris Harper. Every step in their direction turns up the pressure. Antoinette Conway is already suspicious of Stephen’s links to the Mackey family. St. Kilda’s will go a long way to keep murder outside their walls. Holly’s father, Detective Frank Mackey, is circling, ready to pounce if any of the new evidence points toward his daughter. And the private underworld of teenage girls can be more mysterious and more dangerous than either of the detectives imagined. The Secret Place is a powerful, haunting exploration of friendship and loyalty, and a gripping addition to the Dublin Murder Squad series.

Tana French ruined my life again.

Thoughts on The Secret Place:

Two weeks ago I talked about Broken Harbour. I mentioned how much I love Tana French, so I’m not going to do that here. Because it should be obvious by now.

The Secret Place is completely different than anything else I had ever read before and probably will never find anything like it again. I have read plenty of young adult books, but none of them have talked about teenage girls in the way that Tana French does in this book.

This book shows teenage girls in the most realistic light I’ve ever seen. They were moody and sarcastic and rude and thrived on attention. They were clingy and annoying and loving and smart. They were everything that teenage girls are. They are real. I didn’t have to think hard to come up with a comparison of someone that I knew as a teenager. Names just started popping up.

I could talk about how interesting the plot is. I could talk about the amazing quotes that were all through this book. I could talk about why this book kept me up until 8 in the morning. But the characters were the most important part to me.

In In The Woods, Rob Ryan and Cassie Maddox had been working together for 7 years before the time of the book. They wove together like they were one person when they were working. I loved that about them. Moran and Conway, in The Secret Place, hadn’t met until this case. I loved that about them.

They were different than Rob and Cassie because they had to guess what the other person was thinking. It just worked for them. I would love more books about Conway and Moran working together. They were fun together. I loved Conway and thought her and Moran would make a perfect pair if it because a permanent thing.

I know I say this about every Tana French book, but seriously: READ THIS BOOK.

Now I just have to sit and wait impatiently for book 6 to come out. Hopefully Conway is the main character in that one.


Filed under: ESR: 10, Mystery, Review: Beth,


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