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The Midnight Choir [Paperback]

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Item description for The Midnight Choir by Gene Kerrigan...

With moral dilemmas as Dublin emerges as a city of ambiguity: a newly scrubbed face hiding a criminal culture of terrible variety. Small-time criminals have become millionaire businessmen, the poor are still struggling to survive, and the police face a world where the old rules no longer apply.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   356
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1.25" Width: 5.5" Height: 8.25"
Weight:   0.85 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Apr 1, 2007
Publisher   Europa Editions
ISBN  1933372265  
ISBN13  9781933372266  

Availability  0 units.

More About Gene Kerrigan

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Gene Kerrigan is a Dublin writer, the author of Another Country, This Great Little Nation (with Pat Brennan) and Never Make a Promise You Can t Break.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary
2Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > General
3Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Mystery > General
4Books > Subjects > Mystery & Thrillers > Police Procedurals

Reviews - What do customers think about The Midnight Choir?

Corruption, Small and Large Is All Pervasive  Sep 1, 2008
"Like a bird on the wire,
Like a drunk in a midnight choir
I have tried in my way to be free."
Leonard Cohen

What do Detective Inspector Harry Synott, Dixie Peyton, Joshua Boyce, Mr Garcia, the Irish Mob, and the Garda ( Ireland's State Police) all have in common? Corruption, poverty, addiction, and all the ills that a society has in common. These stories all take place in or near Dublin. The old Dublin is gone, the new Irish Mafia is here and they are tough. Nothing, absolutely nothing stops them. The criminals are smart. And, the Garda? They have their own rules, you protect your own.

Gene Kerrigan has written a brilliant novel. There are so many twists and turns and at the same time the author is able to bring it all together with such simplicity that you don't see it coming. Det.Inspec. Synott is one of the good guys we are led to believe. He ratted on some fellow Garda and it has followed him from one assignment to the other. 'They' will never forget and they let Harry know that, day after day, year after year.

We follow Harry and the other characters through three or four cases. What we see is not always what we get. Is Harry really a hero, or is he part of the deceit that seems to be part of every scene? Harry is an old friend of John Grace, who is taking early retirement and goes through his files of old cases with Harry. We met John Grace in Kerrigan;s first novel, 'Little Criminals'. We begin to get the true picture of Harry and his moral perspective. As the story evolves we find that life is indeed full of surprises.

I loved this book. It is at times violent, but always brilliant. The way in which the plots overlap and sometimes merge is uncanny. In the end we know that good and evil lurks behind every tree, and we have both in us, but there is a good reason to feel positive in this world.

Highly Recommended. prisrob 09-01-08

Yeats Is Dead! A Mystery By Fifteen Irish Writers

Hard Cases

Great characters; intriguing plot; local color  May 25, 2008
Gene Kerrigan's second foray into fiction is a well written treat that should be missed by no one. The story unfolds from the point of view of criminals and cops alike, with the shift in viewpoints adding richly to the plot. The characters are well writ, the dialog is sharp and full of the vernacular. As one might expect in contemporary noir, the line between villains and the forces of 'good' is a thin one that gets increasingly frayed as the tale progresses.

Kerrigan knows his Dublin as well as Ian Rankin knows his Edinburgh, and delights in telling us about it, and how it has changed as the economy transformed from perennial loser of Europe to the Celtic Tiger. He's particularly good in showing us the pretensions of the new economy and the similarity of human character whether high brow or low.

I found the protagonists appealing, despite some monstrous character flaws. I also found the way he wove seemingly disparate cases into one interwoven picture to be quite clever. The end of the book tied everything up nicely, but i found myself wishing it had gone on for another hundred pages or so. He had me that hooked.

Given that the is a rough overlay from his first work of fiction, Little Criminals, one can only hope that he is building a multi-volume body of work compromising unique and interconnected characters as Simon Kernick is doing with his tales of modern London.

I recommend Kerrigan highly.
Everyone made interesting and plausible  Mar 27, 2008
I was tremendously impressed with the author's facility in presenting things from the point of view of people all across the social spectrum. Things were well plotted, never boring, and tied together in surprising ways at the end. I heartily recommend this book.
Top Notch Irish Procedural  Oct 30, 2007
Written by a veteran journalist, this excellent Irish police procedural hits all the right notes as it follows three cases over the course of a week. At the center of the book is Detective Inspector Synnott, a highly skilled detective who's somewhat of a black sheep among the police force for reasons that aren't immediately revealed. However, the book opens in Galway, as two uniformed plods deal with a man about to jump off a building. After taking him into custody, they see he's covered in dried blood -- but whose blood that is, how it got there, and what this has to do with the rest of the story takes the course of the week to unravel.

Meanwhile, in Dublin, Synnott and his female partner, Detective Cheney, handle a rape case involving the son of a prominent businessman. When a jewelry store is robbed (in a great sequence the reader is privy to from start to end), Synnott concentrates on that, while Cheney heads the rape investigation. This is pretty straightforward procedural stuff, as Cheney digs into the rapist's past for evidence of past misdeeds, and Synnott is sure he knows who pulled the heist, but can't come up with any evidence. A fourth storyline involves Dixie Peyton, a desperate snitch of Synnott's, whose bright future as a young mother and fitness instructor was derailed several years ago by the death of her hoodlum husband.

While the weaving together of these four storylines would be entertaining enough, what makes it truly memorable is how Kerrigan wraps them all in a gray coat of murky morality. The tension between law and justice is an age old one, and has cropped up plenty in crime fiction and film -- but Synnott is one of the most engaging embodiments of that tension I've come across in quite a while. Although he fits the standard fictional police detective template pretty well (middle-aged, divorced, emotionally closed, virtually friendless, poor relationship with his son, lives spartanly in a soulless flat), he's not quite as straightforward as he seems -- which is all one can say without spoiling the story.

There are other twists within the various storylines to keep things lively, including a rather intriguing subplot involving the jeweler. Kerrigan also uses elements of the story to underscore the dramatic socioeconomic changes Ireland has seen in the last two decades. But this is all kept more or less in the background, where it belongs, as the focus remains on Synnott and his attempt to mete out justice. A top-notch crime novel that will have me seeking out Kerrigan's past fiction and keeping an eye out for whatever he does next.
Celtic Tiger Ireland  Oct 5, 2007
This is a terrific crime story written by a veteran newman who knows his newly rich country all too well...Those seeking quaint stories about lads and lassies dancing at the crossroads will be disappointed, but those who like their characters flawed and very human will find it hard to put this book down. Ireland in this century is no different from any place else.... suffering the same malaises that globalisation, and lots of money, bring. I discovered Kerrigan's fiction via The New York Times review of Irish crime writers...also worth seeking out is Ken Bruen, from Galway. He has a great way with words too.

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