The Secret Place by Tana French is the fifth book featuring the fictional Dublin Murder Squad. The narrator this time around is Detective Stephen Moran. He had a bit role in Faithful Place and worked as Det. Frank Mackey’s flunky. The one thing that Tana French has her fans looking forward to with each new release is who is going to be the next narrator in her next book? I’m not sure if I will continue reading her because The Secret Place wasn’t a successful read for me and I didn’t finish it. I may have to cut ties with her because Broken Harbor didn’t work for me either. It looks like Tana French is trying for mainstream and writing character driven novels with criminal elements. I love that about her books but… this time around the story seems more focused on the characters who are mostly teens. Update: I’ve made a few changes because since I didn’t read the entire book I can’t make certain claims about it like the story being light on criminal elements. It felt like it to me. I skim/read to the end.
The Secret Place was disappointing. I didn’t even finish it. I read up to chapter seven and called it quits. Even though I didn’t finish it, I have a lot to say about it. The mystery is who killed the popular boy at school. This one didn’t work for me for several reasons. First, the story is set in an exclusive girl’s boarding school, St. Kilda’s. So, most of the teens in here are given a point of view. Holly Mackey, who is Det. Frank Mackey’s daughter, is center stage in this story along with her tittering friends. They are considered “the weird group” or outsiders and they are rivals with the “cool group” and I’m too lazy and don’t care to type out all their names. Another distraction to my reading is the language/dialogue. I’m not big on teen talk and each time “weaksauce” and “Amazeballs” or terms like them would show up in the dialogue I would groan inside. (more…)