My profound admiration for Tony Black's books is well known. LOSS, the third book in the Gus Dury series is one of my all-time favourite books. In this latest look at my attempts on catching up on crime fiction, I've set my sights on TRUTH LIES BLEEDING, a book about a case involving the gruesome discovery of a mutilated body in a dumpster belonging to what looks to be a local missing teenager, by four teenage girls in an Edinburgh alleyway.
Inspector Rob Brennan is a damaged yet endearing protagonist. Despite being surrounded by cops he's very much the lone wolf, segregated by the ghosts of his past and haunted by the death of his brother.
Called upon to identify the murder victim and bring those responsible to justice, Brennan not only faces adversary from public speculation but also within the police ranks as pressure builds from his boss and enemies on the force. When the media gets hold of leaked information, fingers point in Brennan's direction, the storm brews and threatens to wash away the remaining threads of humanity he so delicately holds.
Brennan's personal life paints him as both a good and bad family man with the jury swaying consistently one way or the other. He has a wife and child and a mistress who wants more.
While a police procedural, TRUTH LIES BLEEDING reads as a noir. It's dark, moody, evocative, and almost without hope. It's emotionally deep and character driven. The plot pacing is perfect with each twist and turn engaging and vivid.
From the opening line I was hooked:
"The girl's screams were enough to give away their hiding place."
I love books that instantly engage the reader and TRUTH LIES BLEEDING does just that.
Tony Black was born in Australia and grew up in Scotland and Ireland (partial bio taken from the author's website http://www.tonyblack.net/#/about/4526102319) - being an avid Aussie reader, I think us Aussies will claim Tony Black as our own. If you're not reading Tony Black, you best rectify that asap.