Broken Harbor by Tana French
A Novel (Dublin Murder Squad)

80%

18 Critic Reviews

...the stories French tells reflect our own savage times: the real trouble starts when you play fair and do exactly as you’re told.
-NY Times

Synopsis

A New York Times bestseller and quintessential Tana French thriller—a damaged hero, an unspeakable crime, and an intricately plotted mystery—nestled in a timely examination of lives shattered by the global economic downturn.

Mick "Scorcher" Kennedy plays by the book and plays hard. That's why he's the Dublin Murder Squad's top detective, and that's what puts the biggest case of the year in his hands. 

On one of the half-abandoned "luxury" developments that litter Ireland, Patrick Spain and his two young children have been murdered. His wife, Jenny, is in intensive care. At first, Scorcher thinks it's going to be an easy solve, but too many small things can't be explained: the half-dozen baby monitors pointed at holes smashed in the Spains' walls, the files erased from the family's computer, the story Jenny told her sister about a shadowy intruder slipping past the house's locks. And this neighborhood--once called Broken Harbor--holds memories for Scorcher and his troubled sister Dina: childhood memories that Scorcher thought he had tightly under control. 


Tana French's newest novel, The Trespasser, will be published by Viking in October of 2016.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Tana French

See more books from this Author
Tana French grew up in Ireland, Italy, the United States, and Malawi. This is her first book.
 
Published July 24, 2012 by Penguin Books. 456 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Action & Adventure, Crime, History, Religion & Spirituality, Romance, Nature & Wildlife. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
icon10
Peak Rank on Aug 12 2012
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Weeks as Bestseller
Bookmark Counts:
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Critic reviews for Broken Harbor
All: 18 | Positive: 14 | Negative: 4

Kirkus

Excellent
Jul 01 2012

The novel rewards the reader’s patience: There are complications, deliberations and a riveting resolution.

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NY Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Marilyn Stasio on Aug 03 2012

...the stories French tells reflect our own savage times: the real trouble starts when you play fair and do exactly as you’re told.

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NY Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on Jul 18 2012

...she patiently lays her groundwork, then moves into full page-turner mode.

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Guardian

Excellent
Reviewed by Allison Flood on Jul 14 2012

The best yet of French's four excellent thrillers, it leaves its readers – just like the Spains – "throat-deep in terror".

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Blog Critics

Excellent
Reviewed by Jack Goodstein on Jul 23 2012

Tana French knows how to tell a good story. And Broken Harbor has her at the top of her game.

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Dear Author

Below average
Reviewed by Dabney on Aug 07 2012

It’s a kick-ass read, to be sure, but, when I finished it and gave it some serious thought, I wasn’t quite sure what happened. In a mystery, that is a disappointment.

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NPR

Excellent
Reviewed by Jordan Foster on Jul 26 2012

The brilliance lies in French's ability to so easily sow doubt, all the while building to a truly gut-wrenching conclusion.

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NPR

Good
Reviewed by Maureen Corrigan on Jul 25 2012

Broken Harbor gets a lot more deliciously complicated and chaotic before any illusion of order is restored. The construction of the houses in that blasted development may be shoddy, but not so French's plot and characters.

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Globe and Mail

Good
Reviewed by Sandra Kasturi on Aug 05 2012

Tana French returns to the quiet intrigue of the family psychodrama in her fourth novel, Broken Harbour, revelling once again in the slyly ironic and layered implications of the title to point the reader in the right direction.

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AV Club

Below average
Reviewed by Janet Potter on Aug 06 2012

...the mystery-novel/literary-novel blend that read as unique and formula-busting five years ago now simply reads as French’s personal formula.

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Entertainment Weekly

Excellent
Reviewed by Rob Brunner on Jul 25 2012

What really gives Broken Harbor its nerve-rattling force is her exploration of events leading up to the murders, rendered just as vividly as the detectives' scramble to solve them.

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LA Times

Below average
Reviewed by Scott Martelle on Aug 30 2012

The dialogue occasionally drags, and while French paints vivid images of scenes, you get the sense that some of them are unnecessary, the largesse of a loose discipline.

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The Washington Post

Excellent
Reviewed by Patrick Anderson

“Broken Harbor” provides a fascinating and suspenseful plot, believable characters and writing that is precise, knowing and lyrical.

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Denver Post

Excellent
Reviewed by MICHELLE WIENER on Jul 29 2012

The case itself is rigged with French's special blend of twists, misdirects and macabre details, becoming more bizarre and sinister as it goes.

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The Millions

Excellent
Reviewed by Edan Lepucki on Aug 09 2012

In Broken Harbor, French’s writing is masterful, dare I say Godly: smooth, sharply observed, with at least one beautiful and accurate description on every page.

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NY Daily News

Below average
Reviewed by Sherryl Connelly on Jul 29 2012

“Broken Harbor” could be more taut...Not French’s best, but good enough.

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Sun Sentinel

Excellent
Reviewed by Oline Cogdill on Jul 23 2012

French's flair for setting and its influence on characters, as well as her elegant prose, shine in "Broken Harbor."

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California Literary Review

Excellent
Reviewed by David Loftus on Aug 15 2012

With her fourth, Broken Harbor, she continues to mature as a writer and...to delight and collect more readers across the English-speaking world.

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Reader Rating for Broken Harbor
75%

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