Faithful Place by Tana French
Viking, July 13, 2010
Like Tana French’s first two books, In the Woods and The Likeness (which were among my very favorite books of the last two years), Faithful Place is set in Dublin, and it features a character who played a major role in The Likeness. These days, Frank Mackey is a cop on the city’s Undercover Squad, with an ex-wife and a daughter he’d die to protect, but in 1985, he was 19 years old and fiercely in love with Rosie Daly. Together they planned to leave the poverty and squalor of their neighborhood, Faithful Place, and elope to England. But on the night Rosie was meant to meet Frank, she never showed up. Now, 22 years later, her suitcase has been found, stuck behind a chimney at Number 16 Faithful Place, and Frank is sucked right back into the neighborhood, and the family, that he worked so hard to escape.
“Howyis,” I said, in the doorway.
A ripple of mugs going down, heads turning. My ma’s snappy black eyes and five bright-blue pairs exactly like mine, all staring at me.
“Hide the heroin,” Shay said. He was leaning against the window with his hands in his pockets; he’d watched me coming down the road. “It’s the pigs.” . . .
“Francis,” Ma said. She eased back into the sofa, folded her arms where her waist would have been and eyed me up and down. “Could you not be bothered putting on a decent shirt, even?”
I said, “Howya, Ma.”
“Mammy, not Ma. The state of you. The neighbors’ll think I raised a homeless.”
Somewhere along the way I’d swapped the army parka for a brown leather jacket, but apart from that I still have much the same fashion sense I left home with. If I’d worn a suit, she would have given me hassle for having notions of myself. With my ma you don’t expect to win.
What are you reading today?