Our staff knows John Banville as a Man Booker prize winner and not as a mystery author. So after removing copies of "Snow" a few times to reshelve in mysteries, I got curious about it. After all, Michiganders know snow--what can an Irish author tell me? This is a classic police procedural set in the 1957 Irish republic, when the Catholic church held much more power over government offices than it does today. DI Strafford (NOT Stafford) is a protestant investigating a priest's gruesome death, a crime that no one else seems to want solved. Although the plot moves along quickly enough, it's the characters that are so ripe for a BBC series. The comparisons to Nabokov and James are deserved. And it turns out that Banville has been writing another series of police procedurals under the pseudonym Benjamin Black. Time to seek them out.— From Carla's Picks (2021-2022)
*SHORTLISTED FOR THE CWA HISTORICAL DAGGER AWARD*
A Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year
A New York Times Editors' Choice Pick
"Banville sets up and then deftly demolishes the Agatha Christie format...superbly rich and sophisticated."--New York Times Book Review
The incomparable Booker Prize winner's next great crime novel--the story of a family whose secrets resurface when a parish priest is found murdered in their ancestral home
Detective Inspector St. John Strafford has been summoned to County Wexford to investigate a murder. A parish priest has been found dead in Ballyglass House, the family seat of the aristocratic, secretive Osborne family.
The year is 1957 and the Catholic Church rules Ireland with an iron fist. Strafford--flinty, visibly Protestant and determined to identify the murderer--faces obstruction at every turn, from the heavily accumulating snow to the culture of silence in the tight-knit community he begins to investigate.
As he delves further, he learns the Osbornes are not at all what they seem. And when his own deputy goes missing, Strafford must work to unravel the ever-expanding mystery before the community's secrets, like the snowfall itself, threaten to obliterate everything.
Beautifully crafted, darkly evocative and pulsing with suspense, Snow is "the Irish master" (New Yorker) John Banville at his page-turning best.
Don't miss John Banville's next novel, The Lock-up
Other riveting mysteries from John Banville:
- April in Spain