Benjamin Black Brings Back Detective Inspector Hackett and Quirke in Vengeance!

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Benjamin Black Brings Back Detective Inspector Hackett and Quirke in Vengeance!

By Amy Lignor

“Vengeance” is the fifth book in Black’s mystery series featuring Quirke, a pathologist who supports Detective Inspector Hackett in his cases.

The plot is an interwoven, complicated story about two families headed up by business partners who are the sons of business partners. It seems as though one of the families has always been the ‘top dog,’ holding the upper hand in all the business dealings that have occurred over the years.

Victor Delahaye (the dominant partner), takes Davy Clancy (son of the secondary partner) out for a day’s sail—much to the dismay of Davy as he is not a very good sailor. While out on the high seas, Victor tells Davy a story about fathers and sons, and then proceeds to commit suicide by shooting himself in the heart, leaving behind a very gruesome scene.

Victor’s corpse is sent to Dublin and because of the prominent position Delahaye held in the business world, the case comes to the attention of Detective Inspector Hackett and, of course, Quirke—who is named as the pathologist on the case. The two men have to proceed very carefully because of Delahaye’s position in the community, so they tread meticulously as they hold their interviews with everyone, including Mona, the dead man’s young wife; James and Jonas, his twin sons; and Jack Clancy, his partner. However, when a second death happens, a secret from the past is revealed, one that could destroy the reputations of some of the most prominent people in Dublin. The question that the Detective has to answer first and foremost is, “Why did Delahaye kill himself?” And what on earth does it have to do with knocking the other families out of society once and for all.

Although an interesting read at times, anyone that is new to Black’s writing should probably begin with the first in this series in order to fully comprehend all the ins-and-outs of the characters.

Until Next Time, Everybody,


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