Tuesday 19 December 2017

The Confession by Jo Spain @SpainJoanne @QuercusBooks #TheConfession @Hannah_Robbo

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.
Just an hour later the attacker, JP Carney, has handed himself in to the police. He confesses to beating Harry to death, but JP claims that the assault was not premeditated and that he didn't know the identity of his victim. With a man as notorious as Harry McNamara, the detectives cannot help wondering, was this really a random act of violence or is it linked to one of Harry's many sins: corruption, greed, betrayal?
This gripping psychological thriller will have you questioning, who - of Harry, Julie and JP - is really the guilty one? And is Carney's surrender driven by a guilty conscience or is his confession a calculated move in a deadly game?

The Confession by Jo Spain is published by Quercus in hardback on 25 January 2018.

I'm not sure why I've not read anything by Jo Spain before, she's the author of the Tom Reynolds Mystery books, and having just researched them online, I am determined that I am going to read them.

The Confession is this author's first psychological thriller, and my word, it's brilliant. I was snared by the explosive prologue and felt as though I'd hardly taken a breath throughout the whole story. This is incredible writing, and fans of this genre are in for such a treat.

Set in Ireland in the aftermath of the Celtic Tiger; The Confession is a crime story, a murder mystery, and above all, a deep and thoughtful look at how the sudden excess of wealth, and the even quicker demise of financial industry affected certain people in the country. Populated with characters that are both fascinating and hateful in equal measures, The Confession has a depth and substance that raises it far above many other novels from the same genre.

The reader knows just who carried out the horrific attack on Harry McNamara whilst his wife Julie looked on, doing and saying nothing to try to stop the attack. Cleverly, the author relates the now and the then in three distinct voices; Julie, the wife; Alice Moody, the investigating police officer and JP Carney; the attacker. These are three loud voices, each of them have their own thoughts about events, and each one is perfectly narrated.

The author takes her reader back as Julie remembers how she and Harry met, and this enables her to give a detailed insight into Harry's character. He's not a nice bloke, not at all. It's difficult to understand how Julie stayed married to him at times, but their unbreakable bond is explored in detail, leading to a final reveal that is both unexpected and shocking. JP Carney is a multi-layered character who cleverly hides behind a wall of silence, yet has the most detailed and fascinating back story. The creation of these characters is wonderfully done; there is not a great deal to like about any of them, but oh, they are so well drawn; quite brilliant.

The Confession is a totally absorbing and compelling read. It is dark and twisted and horribly believable. I was gripped throughout. Highly recommended.

Jo Spain's first novel, top ten bestseller With our Blessing, was one of seven finalists in the Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller Competition 2015. It was named as an Irish Times crime fiction book of the year by Declan Burke. Beneath the Surface (2016) and Sleeping Beauties (2017), the second and third in the DI Tom Reynolds series followed, to further critical acclaim. Her standalone thriller, The Confession, will be released January 2018. 

Jo is currently writing for TV.

A graduate of Trinity College Dublin, Jo lives in Dublin with her husband and their four young children. Jo previously worked as a policy advisor in the Irish parliament and as vice-chair of the business body InterTrade Ireland.

Jo’s debut novel is set against a background of the infamous Irish Magdalene Laundries and Mother and Baby homes. The author’s own father was born in one such home in Dublin and the novel’s backdrop was constructed based on the in-depth research she undertook while attempting to trace her family roots.

Her favourite writers include Pierre LeMaitre, Fred Vargas, Louise Penny, Jo Nesbo, Ann Cleeves, B.A. Paris, Elizabeth Haynes and Agatha Christie.

Follow her on Twitter @SpainJoanne
Find her Author page on Facebook  

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