Book Review: A Song of Shadows by John Connolly



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Grievously wounded private detective Charlie Parker investigates a case that has its origins in a Nazi concentration camp during the Second World War.

Broken, but undeterred, private detective Charlie Parker faces the darkest of dark forces in a case with its roots in the Second World War, and a concentration camp unlike any other . . .

Recovering from a near-fatal shooting and tormented by memories of a world beyond this one, Parker has retreated to the small Maine town of Boreas to recover. There he befriends a widow named Ruth Winter and her young daughter, Amanda. But Ruth has her secrets. She is hiding from the past, and the forces that threaten her have their origins in the Second World War, in a town called Lubko and a concentration camp unlike any other. Old atrocities are about to be unearthed, and old sinners will kill to hide their sins. Now Parker is about to risk his life to defend a woman he barely knows, one who fears him almost as much as she fears those who are coming for her.

His enemies believe him to be vulnerable. Fearful. Solitary.

But they are wrong. Parker is far from afraid, and far from alone.

For something is emerging from the shadows . . .


Winter dead, spring dying, and summer waiting in the wings.


A Song of Shadows was brilliant. I read a couple of chapters on Friday and the rest in one sitting yesterday because I couldn’t put Charlie Parker’s latest adventure down. Connolly is one of my favourite writers and I’ve been a huge fan since Parker’s first novel, Every Dead Thing. Like the last novel, The Wolf in Winter, Parker is different in A Song of Shadows. He’s more mature. The Wolf in Winter and A Song of Shadows is less grisly than other novels in the series. I was delighted to see Angel and Louis back in the spotlight. I have a soft spot for them. There are revelations in A Song of Shadows that I didn’t see coming. Parker is protected which explains why his behaviour and actions and the behaviour and actions of Angel and Louis hasn’t seen them all thrown in jail long before now. I’m glad Parker is still alive. It was touch and go at the end of The Wolf in Winter. I really enjoyed the fact that Parker’s daughter Sam puts in an appearance. She’s a gifted psychic who among other things can see the spirit of Parker’s dead daughter Jennifer and also seems able to control objects in some way. A sand dune opens and sucks a man in to his death who killed Ruth Winter and is trying to kill Parker. Parker’s sees his daughter Sam’s face twisted with hatred like an ancient hag and believes she willed the man dead and it happened. I look forward to seeing where Connolly goes with this.




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