blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: A River of Bodies – Kevin Doyle*

In this sequel to his impressive debut novel To Keep A Bird Singing, Kevin Doyle delves further into the murky world of the powerful Donnelly family and their association with the Catholic church and the security forces. The clock is ticking as Noelie and his friends try to uncover the network of corruption and deception that the family have used to protect themselves and their operations. But Albert Donnelly is onto Noelie and there’s nothing he won’t do to stop him.

Edgy, dark and sharp, Kevin Doyle’s A River of Bodies is a cracking political thriller – restless, brilliantly plotted and topical.

Kevin Doyle is from Cork and works as a writer and creative writing teacher. He has been published in many literary journals, including Stinging Fly, The Cork Review, Southwords and The Cúirt Journal. He is the winner of a string of awards, including the Tipperary Short Story Award (1998) – first; Over The Edge New Writer Of The Year – shortlist; Hennessy Literary Awards(2011) – shortlist; Seán ÓFaoláin Prize(2013) – runner-up; Michael McLaverty Short Story Award(2016) – winner. In 2018, he published his first novel, To Keep A Bird Singing. He lives in Cork.


My thoughts:

First read To Keep A Bird Singing.

Talk about conspiracies. Politics in Ireland has always been complicated, mostly due to the complete mess that England made over the centuries.

This novel blends the IRA, the police and security services, the Catholic Church and its various cover ups and horrible history, and the ordinary people that get drawn into this chaos.

Noelie is the everyman hero of these books, who along with a selection of friends pursues justice at almost any cost after the deaths of his nephew and best friend in the first book.

The conspiracy gets knottier and more complicated the more they uncover and horrors of the past come to light. Albert Donnelly is really sinister and evil.

The writing is taut, compelling and powerful. The plot is quite dark, unsurprisingly given the basis of it – the church, industrial schools, child abuse and murder.

The ending is a complete cliffhanger and I cannot wait to find out in the third book what happened to Noelie and friends.

*I was kindly gifted these books in exchange for taking part in this blog tour but all opinions are my own.

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