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The Nameless Dead - Brian McGilloway
on 25 September 2012
Set against the backdrop of present day Northern Ireland, Inspector Devlin is involved in the Commission for the Location of Victim's Remains, treading a fine line between the violent divisions of the past and the fragile peace of the future. A tip-off has led him to the possible burial place of Declan Cleary - man thought to have been killed for informing on a friend thirty years previously. The rules of the Commission are clear: evidence revealed by the Commission's investigations cannot lead to prosecution. But what if that evidence is discovery of a grave containing the skeleton of a baby who, it appears, did not die of natural causes? Inspector Devlin is a man who takes risks, who follows his nose and who does not like to be told that he cannot investigate what appears to be a sickening crime. So, of course, he investigates it.
What follows is an intriguing mystery, slow-paced at times but still a page-turner. Inspector Devlin's off-road enquiries rake up a past of fraud, greed and violence and the manipulation of young, vulnerable girls giving birth out of wedlock. As he begins to draw together seemingly unconnected people and events, more deaths follow and he puts his own family at risk.
The plot is believable, the characters engaging and if there's one thing I'll remember the book for, it's that scene with the drug dealer and the cess-pit. I'm sorry, I know I shouldn't have but I did laugh!
A good read with a satisfying conclusion.