Book Review: The Trespasser by Tana French

October 20, 2016 Book review 13 ★★★★★

In a gritlit genre full of police procedural novels, Tana French’s books shine bright like diamonds.  They are not cheap imitations like so many others out there instead her talented writing showcases her novels as the real deal.  If you want clever, insightful crime fiction, then Tana is your author.

Book Review: The Trespasser by Tana FrenchThe Trespasser (Dublin Murder Squad, #6) by Tana French
Published by Viking on October 4th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery & Detective, Police Procedural, Psychological, Suspense
Pages: 449
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss

Being on the Murder squad is nothing like Detective Antoinette Conway dreamed it would be. Her partner, Stephen Moran, is the only person who seems glad she’s there. The rest of her working life is a stream of thankless cases, vicious pranks, and harassment. Antoinette is savagely tough, but she’s getting close to the breaking point.   Their new case looks like yet another by-the-numbers lovers’ quarrel gone bad. Aislinn Murray is blond, pretty, groomed to a shine, and dead in her catalogue-perfect living room, next to a table set for a romantic dinner. There’s nothing unusual about her—except that Antoinette’s seen her somewhere before.   And that her death won’t stay in its neat by-numbers box. Other detectives are trying to push Antoinette and Steve into arresting Aislinn’s boyfriend, fast. There’s a shadowy figure at the end of Antoinette's road. Aislinn's friend is hinting that she knew Aislinn was in danger. And everything they find out about Aislinn takes her further from the glossy, passive doll she seemed to be.   Antoinette knows the harassment has turned her paranoid, but she can’t tell just how far gone she is. Is this case another step in the campaign to force her off the squad, or are there darker currents flowing beneath its polished surface?


First Line of The Trespasser by Tana French:

“My ma used to tell me stories about my da.”

My Thoughts on The Trespasser by Tana French:

  • First thing you need to know is that Tana French is my favourite author.
  • Second thing you need to know is that the Dublin Murder Squad is my favourite series.
  • Third thing you need to know is that each book can be read as a standalone
  • Fourth thing you need to know is that you need to read this series asap!
  • And the last thing you need to know is that this book is every bit fabulous as previous books in the series.

Ok, that’s a lot of the need to knows out of the way, now I can get on with the review.  PS – the most important point is number 4, read the entire series!  And if you have the whole series to binge read, then I’m sick with jealously as I’d love to be settling down for a glorious read-in.

Gritty Themes

Set in Ireland, each book features a detective on the Dublin Murder Squad.  A modern Ireland, grit and all, unlike the rosy picture you might get in other novels.  The Trespasser is Antoinette’s book.  It depicts the struggle of  being a girl boss in a male dominated environment.  Messages don’t reach her, files are messed up, petty little disturbances like you might expect in a teenage drama.

But it all rings so true.  Antoinette has to rise above it but also remain one of the lads and on top of that nail the murder case.  In this case, I feel the crime is more the backdrop of the novel.  A very entertaining backdrop that had me puzzled for a long time trying to figure it out.

Character driven books

Above all else, Tana French writes books about characters.  Complex characters that absorb all your attention.  And her speciality is blurred lines where it’s hard to know just what’s right and what’s wrong.  All described in beautiful evocative language.  Her words are like poetry but action packed poetry that has you reading as fast as you can.

In a nutshell, it’s fab!

Rating Report
Did I feel it?
Overall: five-stars

Who should read The Trespasser by Tana French?

I’d highly recommend this to all fans of gripping crime fiction, especially if you like to read about the tangled personal lives of the detectives on the case.  Fans of previous books in this series such as The Likeness and The Secret Place should also love this.  Finally if you are a fan of Harban Coben or Linwood Barclay, I’d suggest you give this series a chance to woo you.

Thanks to Viking and Edelweiss for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.



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13 Responses to “Book Review: The Trespasser by Tana French”

    • trish

      Oh yay, I love finding other Tana French fans! Her characters just really get under my skin and I love her books. I hope you enjoy this one as much as the others Grace. I know I did!

    • trish

      I like to start series at the beginning too! I do think book 1 is my least favourite in the series though (but it’s still pretty great!).

  1. Brandie

    I haven’t read anything by this author, even though I own all her books on my Kindle. I know – shameful! I’m a huge fan of Harlan Coben, so I have high hopes I’ll enjoy her, too. I pre-ordered this book, and was so excited to start it. I actually did start it a few weeks ago, but it’s pretty detailed and it wasn’t the right time for me to be reading it. I didn’t have time to really sit and focus on it like I wanted to. I hope to pick it up again soon. So glad to see you enjoyed it. Great review!

    • trish

      Owning all the books is great start! They are detailed and I know what you mean about being in the right frame of mind but hopefully you will be soon and will love them as much as I do Brandie 🙂

  2. Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library

    I really hoped to read the first book in the series this year but I’m not sure if it’s going to happen. This review makes me even more anxious to read it. I’m always worried when the main character changes with each book as sometimes that makes the series lose focus or feel inconsistent but it sounds like French is doing this perfectly. Can’t wait to get started!
    Katherine @ I Wish I Lived in a Library recently posted…Honor Bound – Blog Tour Contemporary Romance Review + Giveaway

    • trish

      We get glimpses of the main characters in the preceding book and I always think that I won’t like them. But then when they get their own book and their own pov, they win me over. And having a different character keeps the series feeling really fresh.

    • trish

      I do prefer to read series from the beginning but in this case you’re fine! I hope you get to it sometime Emma and enjoy it as much as I did.

  3. Lark

    French’s novels are very character-driven. I think that’s why I like them so much. And I have you to thank for getting me to read/try them in the first place. 🙂 I can’t wait to read this one, too. Great review!
    Lark recently posted…Shiver by Alex Nye

    • trish

      I’m always happy to convert people to Tana’s camp Lark. I think you’ll enjoy this every bit as much as previous books in the series.

  4. Helena @ Book Nerd Addict

    Hello, Trish.
    This is my first time on your lovely blog. I must admit I never heard of this author before, until a few weeks ago. I’m trying to venture out of normal genres and came across this book specifically. I didn’t know it was a standalone series until this review. You definitely made my mind up. I was contemplating if I wanted to start another series. I didn’t want to read to much into reviews on Goodreads for fear of being spoiled. So thank you so much for your none spoiler review.

    BTW you had me at number 4 🙂
    New sub to your lovely blog. Happy reading Trish xoxo

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