MysteryPeople Review: A SONG OF SHADOWS by John Connolly

song of shadows

Reviewed by MysteryPeople Scott

T here is a saying that goes “There are victims of the Holocaust who are yet to be born.” A social sin that large creates an evil that doesn’t go away with a simple surrender. John Connolly explores this idea with his latest Charlie Parker thriller, A Song Of Shadows.

Charlie is staying in the small Maine town of Boreas, healing his body from wounds sustained in the previous Wolf In Winter. A body of a Florida man washes up on the beach and the murder appears to threaten his neighbor Ruth Winter and her young daughter, even though Ruth at first denies any connection. Charlie knows malevolent intent when he feels it, so he steps in with allies Angel and Louis and even his nemesis, The Collector. It is all connected to Nazi war criminals, their sympathizers and hunters, and a special concentration camp.

Connolly’s deft inclusion of the supernatural into the detective form allows his novel to probe deep into his subject. An argument is made that the Nazi Party was as much a criminal enterprise as it was a political one. We see the legacy of those crimes from both those who executed and survived them, as well as their offspring and generations that followed. The book symbolizes this perfectly with a young, directionless Nazi hunter who has given himself a serial number tattoo. Connolly takes it all in with a cold yet poetic eye. Parker solving the case at the end is more than a reveal, it is a study in the legacy of evil.

The Charlie Parker series has always tackled sin – both banal and festering. Here, he is able to tackle one of history’s greatest crimes with fresh insight, connecting a sense of hope with the ideas of survival and redress. He shows the the declaration of “Never Again” deals with present as much as past.

A Song Of Shadows hits the shelves today! You can find copies of Connolly’s latest on our shelves and via bookpeople.com.

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