ISBN-13: 978-1444705089
Publisher: Hachette Books
Published: July 2010
448 pgs
Source: Personal Library

I nearly squealed in delight when I stepped into the bookstore and saw this book on display. Honestly speaking, I never expected I would get this book sooner but nevertheless, I was glad that it was one of those times when the local bookstores are able to get some titles way earlier than others!

After reading In the Woods and The Likeness and enjoyed them, I think it is natural to feel the anticipation and the high expectations I had had on this book way before it is released. And before I share my thoughts with you now, let me summarise the story for you.

Faithful Place is the third novel of the Dublin murder squad; however if you are expecting Detective Rob Ryan or Detective Cassie Maddox to make an appearance in this book, you would be disappointed because none of them is mentioned here. I cannot remember if Detective Frank Mackey is ever mentioned in the previous book, but anyway this book is a case of his long lost love, Rosie Daly, and how her disappearance has left an impact on him as well as the people surrounding him.

When Frank was nineteen, he and Rosie had made a pact to leave Dublin for London so they can start their life anew. Rosie has a strict father and he always goes out of his way to make sure Rosie has nothing to do with the Mackey family. Truth be told, the Dalys think they are dysfunctional and their status is different. Anyway, this does not stop Rosie from seeing Frank and they are, in fact are looking forward to the day they are leaving Dublin. They had agreed to meet at Faithful Place, a run-down unit where no one is staying there anymore and is just a place for anyone who would like to do whatever their business is discreetly. After all, the place seems creepy with the rumours flying around about the basement.

However, Rosie did not turn up and her disappearance has left Frank feeling perplexed and doubtful about their relationship. As much as he believed in Rosie, there is still a tiny flicker of doubt in him after all these twenty years, now that he works as an undercover. He did not want to think of Rosie, after all he cut all ties with his family but a telephone call from his sister, Jackie, has resurrect his thoughts of Rosie once again now that her suitcase was found behind a fireplace at Faithful Place.

Frank returns to Faithful Place, and to his home where he rekindles his relationship with his four siblings as he began his investigation. It is not a surprise to say the case is not as simple as it seems to be, but the people in the neighbourhood and Detective Scorcher, the lead investigator of the case, did not make things easier for Frank as they wouldn't want him around. The community is wary of Frank's return considering his designation, and no doubt Detective Scorcher does not want anyone to mind the case he is looking into. Of course these do not keep Frank away, and the more he digs into finding the truth, the more tricky and scarier it has become.

If you have read the first two instalments by Tana French, you'd know her writing style and her psychological suspense are the main factors that never fail to capture a reader's attention. Unlike other suspense, Tana French's books do not only revolve around the whodunit element but also how the story would somehow impact the protagonist(s) in some way or other. There are usually a few thought-provoking issues for her readers to ponder about, and one could possibly say there is nothing right or wrong with them except that they usually leave more questions than answers.

Reading Faithful Place reminds me a little of my reading experience with In the Woods; I remember there was a part that left me totally stumped and frustrated but in the end I realised sometimes things are being that way. That said, I do not imply that Faithful Place contains the same part that left me perplexed but it totally boggles my mind and made me question about a few things (and believe me, this is all I can say about it) which I don't think I might have the answers in reality. I don't know about you, but sometimes I do like books like that; one that makes me ponder more about the issue (and/or motive) than the whodunit and how the case would resolve in the end.

What can I say? I totally enjoyed reading Faithful Place! I am sure this book would make a great book club discussion because there are certainly some things I would like to talk about with anyone who has read this book.
15 Responses
  1. Julia Says:

    Sound like this was a thrilling, and exciting reading for you Melody. I'm glad you are enjoy reading something that get you excited :)

  2. Anonymous Says:

    I loved both In the Woods and The Likeness. Can't wait to get my hands on this. I'm so glad you liked it. French does a great job in creating atmosphere and a very believable world (even though some of the situations are totally crazy). I think Frank Mackay was Cassie's commanding officer when she was undercover.

  3. Melody Says:

    Julia - It sure is, Julia! Now I'm hoping Tana French will have another new release soon!

    Chasingbawa - Yes, French is excellent when it comes to creating atmosphere!

    And thanks for telling me that Frank was Cassie's commanding officer. I didn't exaggerate when I mentioned before that I've a short memory, LOL.

  4. Sandy Nawrot Says:

    I was thrilled when I saw your review on this book! I love Tana French, and I've had Faithful Place on my "need" list since I heard about it. I'd love to get my hands on the audio, but so far the library hasn't picked it up.

  5. The Bookworm Says:

    Great review Mel. It does sound very good. I enjoy books that make me wonder also. The other two books do sound interesting.

  6. Iliana Says:

    Wonderful review, Melody! I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed it. I loved her two first books and am eagerly awaiting this one but after my disappointment with the Stieg Larsson book (also the third one) I am trying to keep my expectations in check.

    I remember I had to think about the ending of In the Woods for a while because I wasn't sure how I really felt about it. If I was reading solely as a mystery novel I would have been disappointed but I think it really did work for the book. Can't wait to read this one!

  7. Melody Says:

    Sandy - I hope your library has the audio soon! And I can't wait to hear your views on it!

    Naida - I hope you'll read her books if you haven't done so because they're really good! :D

    Iliana - I'm glad this book didn't disappoint me. Frank is one great character, and I'm hoping there'll be a sequel next!

    I've to admit I was quite blown away with In the Woods; the ending has left me ponder for a few days after reading it but I decided I still liked it that way anyway. :)

  8. Darlene Says:

    I've heard a lot of good things about her books but have yet to read any of them. I'm so glad you enjoyed this one so much.

  9. Melody Says:

    Dar - I hope you'll enjoy them all when you get to them. :)

  10. Marg Says:

    I liked In the Woods, and loved The Likeness. I am anticipating this book a lot!

  11. Alice Says:

    Hi Melody, I haven't read any of Tana French's books but I do have THE LIKENESS in my TBR. Great review! It's always great to see your favorite author's new book in the bookstore!

  12. Stephanie Says:

    I'm in the middle of Faithful Place right now. Like you, I'm a fan of the author and am really enjoying her new book!

  13. I've been counting down the days for this to be released... read both In The Woods and Likeness a couple months ago, and I'm hooked. Can't wait to pick it up this week :)

  14. I haven't read anything by Tana French but I am attracted to her covers! I actually like when books present issues and then don't fully solve them--much like in life where lines are easily blurred and without answers. Sometimes this works better than others in books, though.

    Are her books all related or stand-alone?

  15. Melody Says:

    Marg, Alice, Stephanie, Colette & Trish - Thanks so much for your comments! I hope you'll enjoy reading this book as much as I did!!

    Trish - Don't you think her covers are awesome?! You know, sometimes I do like it when books present issues and then don't fully solve them. And as you said, makes it much more real life.

    Her books can be read as stand-alone, however their characters are somewhat connected as you may see some of them make a brief appearance in other books.

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