- Publisher: Hodder Paperback
- Format: Paperback | 496 pages
- Dimensions: 128mm x 194mm x 32mm | 340g
- Publication date: 21 January 2010
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 1444704672
- ISBN 13: 9781444704679
- Sales rank: 50,991
When Charlie Parker was still a boy, his father, a NYPD cop, killed a young couple, a boy and a girl barely older than his son, then took his own life. There was no explanation for his actions. Stripped of his private investigator's license, and watched by the police, Parker is working in a Portland bar, holding down a job and staying out of trouble. But in the background, he is working on his most personal case yet, an investigation into his own origins and the circumstances surrounding the death of his father, Will. It is an investigation that will reveal a life haunted by lies, by his mother's loss and his father's betrayal, by secrets kept and loyalties compromised. And by two figures in the shadows, a man and a woman, with only one purpose: to bring an end to Charlie Parker's existence ...
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John Connolly is the first non-American writer to win the US Shamus award and the first Irish writer to win an Edgar award. His debut - EVERY DEAD THING - introduced the character of Private Investigator Charlie Parker, and swiftly launched him right into the front rank of thriller writers. All his subsequent novels have been Sunday Times bestsellers. Before becoming a novelist, he spent five years working as a journalist for The Irish Times, to which he continues to contribute. In 2007 he was awarded the Irish Post Award for Literature. BOOKS TO DIE FOR, which he edited with Declan Burke, was the winner of the 2013 Anthony, Agatha and Macavity awards for Best Non-Fiction work. You can learn more from John's website, www.johnconnollybooks.com, find him on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/jconnollybooks.
By Reviews and Books Galore 26 May 2012
The Lovers opens with Charlie Parker announcing that the book "is an investigation into the circumstances of my father's death". That line created so much expectation and questions in myself, the reader. Why did his father kill those teenagers? Why did he then kill himself? And what resides in Parker's family that makes him what he is?
Without delving into spoilers, I can definitely say this book is John Connolly's best book yet. The prose is gorgeous without being arrogant and obnoxious , and the plot drags you into an all night reading session as Parker comes to grip with his father's, and his own, intertwined past. Coupled with the plot and the prose the book proves that, unlike many literary writers, John Connolly can actually write a good plot.
My favourite style in this book is that John Connolly blends modern storytelling with a more word of mouth, 'round a campfire, style of tale telling. There are many moments where we get some deep insight into a character, or a place or even a tale, all in a colloquial, word of mouth language. All of this adds a substance and an atmosphere to the tale that is lacking in many books. Also, it creates a sense of kinship to the peripheral characters that isn't apparent in most books, which makes certain scenes unbearably heart wrenching.
John Connolly seems to play around with character point of view. It isn't noticeable, or overdone, but you do find yourself filling in what you're not directly told. Like, how unnerving is Charlie Parker? Characters, especially when Parker's enraged, back down, or act as though they're in danger. Why do they do this? Is Charlie Parker a wolf in sheep's clothing to many people? That is one of the joys about reading this book, the joy of seeing what you're not told.
With every book there are always downfalls. The two things that bothered me in this book was the lack of depth of the main antagonists and the rather un-climatic ending. Although, one could argue that since this is Parker's tale, Connolly deliberately does not flesh out the villains, so as not to take away from Parker. Still, the confrontation was rather lacklustre and I would've liked more meat to the villains.
If you like crime, fantasy or horror, you should definitely buy this book.
More restrained and reflective ... but no less powerful Marcel Berlins, Sunday Times As ever with Connolly, the macabre narrative is couched in prose that is often allusive and poetic. Barry Forshaw, Independent Visionary brand of neo-noir ... terrifically exciting, tightly plotted ... written in an uncommonly fine, supple, sensuous prose. Irish Times Tremendous stuff, as Connolly's novels always are. Mark Timlin, Independent on Sunday His latest plot is a clever mixture of quest and chase, written in prose that unfolds at warp speed, and rarely fails to sing. Observer A tightly plotted, beautifully constructed novel where John Connolly exhibits his considerable skills. crimesquad You may think at times you are reading a literary novel but then Connolly will remind you he's just as adept at the violent strategies of the thriller. Either way you will be left shaken by the experience. Daily Express His usual intriguing blend of fast-paced crime fiction and fantasy. Independent A strange, compelling mixture of genuinely scary gothic horror, humour and hard-nosed crime, The Lovers is among his best. Best read by torchlight in a broken-down car, right at the end of a forest track. During a storm. Herald 'Superbly written ... another excellent entry in the Charlie Parker series and can be easily read as a stand-alone' 4 stars RTE Guide Creepy, nailbiting and always plausible Sun