There aren’t many trilogies around made up of five books, but it seems that Serpent’s Tail couldn’t get enough of Adrian McKinty‘s Sean Duffy series. After extending it to four books with Gun Street Girl last year, a fifth is on its way. Feast your eyes on Rain Dogs, which like the previous books takes its name from a Tom Waits lyric.
The series began with The Cold, Cold Ground set in 1981, when Bobby Sands was on hunger strike. Now Duffy’s life has moved on into the late 80s, Mike Tyson is a rising star in the world of boxing but Northern Ireland is still fixated with acronyms like IRA, RUC and UDA. Duffy is a most rare thing – a Roman Catholic detective in the Royal Ulster Constabulary. As you can imagine he’s hated by his own, and not entirely trusted by many of his Protestant colleagues… or the powers that be. It’s amazing he’s lasted this long in the job but support characters like DS McCrabban have kept him almost sane.
In Rain Dogs, between stints of riot duty, he’ll be investigating the death of Lily Bigelow, a journalist whose body is found in the grounds of one of Ulster’s most famous landmarks, Carrickfergus Castle. It’s a snowy winter, it looks like suicide, but things don’t sit right with Duffy and his built-in corruption alert beacon is flashing red hot. Who killed Lily Bigelow and what else have they got to hide? Chapters with titles like The Killing of the Chief Super mean we can expect plenty of tension and conflict.