Sunday 10 June 2012

Book ~ "Bloodlines" (2005) Jan Burke

From Amazon ~ In 1958, Conn O'Connor, a brash young reporter for the Las Piernas News-Express, is taken under the wing of veteran Jack Corrigan, who is nearly killed after claiming to have seen a blood-spattered car buried on a farm. In 1978, another brash youngster - Irene Kelly - in turn is taken under O'Connor's wing. By 1998, Irene is the veteran, mentoring two rookies. The sweep of events over such a long time span imparts a certain majesty.

There are murders, to be sure, but little mystery, since it's clear early on who is responsible. The deaths serve more as a tragic link across the years and to the heartbroken families who grow old awaiting resolution. Several secondary characters from Burke's earlier novels appear in part three, furthering the sense of events coming full circle.

In the end, it's the human relationships that stick in the mind and the heart. A few flaws - dangling loose ends, too many summaries and, most serious, a disappointing slide back into standard crime-fiction mode - don't diminish the book's overall strength and enormous charm. With its multiple rich story lines, dead-on newsroom atmosphere and friendships that deepen through the decades, this is an extremely satisfying work.

This is the ninth book in the series of eleven (as of 2011) ... I'm rereading the series.

This book is divided into three parts with 20-year intervals in between. We meet O'Connor as a kid and watch him grow and become a reporter, being mentored by Jack Corrigan. Two people have drowned and a couple and their baby have disappeared. Twenty years later, O'Connor and Irene Kelly start working together and the mystery of the disappearance couple and their baby is solved. Twenty years after that, Corrigan and O'Connor are long gone and the loose ends of the mysteries are finally solved.

I enjoyed this book. We get to know a lot of people in the past that we know now like O'Connor who died in the first book of the series and Lefebrve who was prominent in the last book. As with Burke's other books, there were a lot of characters but I was able to keep them all straight. I didn't find it dragged and I was okay with the ending.

1 comment:

JP said...

I just finished, or think I finished this book, but there seemed to be no end to it....I think I am missing some pages. No answers came at the end, and it seemed like Irene was being watched. I wondered if perhaps Swanie's year off was something more, but my book ended with a phone call. Love to know if I was missing pages!