TITLE: The White Road
AUTHOR: John Connolly
BLURB: In South Carolina, a young black man faces the death penalty for the rape and murder of Marianne Larousse, daughter of one of the wealthiest men in the state. It’s a case that nobody wants to touch, deeply rooted in old evil — and old evil is Charlie Parker’s speciality. He’s about to enter a living nightmare, a dreamscape of sorrow haunted by the murderous spectre of a hooded woman, by a black car waiting for a passenger that never comes, and by the sinister complicity of both friends and enemies in Larousse’s brutal death. Soon, all will face a final reckoning in an unearthly realm where the paths of the living and the dead converge. A place known only as the White Road.
In this the fourth Charlie Parker outing, John Connolly takes a definite step nearer to the supernatural. The move from Maine to the deep south adds another flavour to the tale and allows Connolly’s lyrical style to flourish. He makes good use of the combination of standard crime thriller and supernatural horror story to maintain his own brand of thriller.
Unlike the first three instalments, this one definitely requires you to have read at least the previous novel – The Killing Kind. In fact, it pretty much takes up where the previous novel ended.
To be honest I wavered a bit with this one, but not enough to give up my craving for more. I particularly liked the way the author uses the continuing storyline to deepen our knowledge of each of the main character’s backstory. Louis particularly begins to step forward and become a leading character rather than a best-supporting actor. In fact, I think Parker is in danger of being over-shadowed by the hitman duo, Louis and Angel.
The plot thickens and broadens so much it’s becoming a challenge to see where it all might go. I can’t wait to see where this ride takes us.