Publication Date: Available Now from Orion
Source: Goodreads Giveaway
Prison changes a man. Sometimes in ways you can see. Usually in ways you can’t.
The only reason Henry Quinn survived three years inside was because of Evan Riggs, a one-time country singer, one-time killer, now serving a life sentence. No parole. On the day he gets out, Henry promises Evan he will find his daughter, the daughter he never met, and deliver a letter.
A free man, Henry heads to the small Texan town where Evan grew up and where his brother Carson now resides as sheriff. There’s no sign of the girl and her uncle claims to know nothing of her whereabouts. But Henry isn’t about to give up. He made a promise and, no matter what, he’s going to find Evan’s daughter.
As Carson’s behaviour towards him becomes ever more threatening, Henry realises that there are dark secrets buried at the heart of this quiet town. What terrible thing drove the brothers apart and what happened to the missing girl?
So another atmospheric, unrelenting but also gently flowing read from the pen of one of my favourite authors – another book from him that I just sat down and devoured. Honestly if ever there were books that should come with chocolate, it’s ones written by R J Ellory.
In Mockingbird Songs there is a definite correlation between the writing and the music – in fact the giveaway came with music attached in the form of Low Country and I’m almost as in love with those songs as I am with the book so atmospherically speaking this was a terrific overall experience for me.
On a more traditional book review note – the story was emotionally raw and very addictive, taking as it does the heart of a disturbing sibling relationship, adding in small town politics and power struggles and giving us a main protagonist in Henry that can view all this initially from a distance and take us with him into to the soul of the narrative.
As we jump between past and present, as Henry remains ever determined to deliver a letter he has been trusted with, the story unfolds at a pitch perfect pace, the characters grow and become real and there is a level of authenticity here that not many authors can pull off, no not many at all. Here is one of them.
The writing is beautiful and as always has a sharp literary edge – you really do just sink into that time and place and live every moment. A snapshot of a different era, true noir written with a modern eye for detail – there is so much to love here I can’t even think how to describe it all so I won’t try I’ll just say Yep.
As never fails to happen I was an emotional wet heap by the time I got to the end – as I said recently to someone who will recognise themselves should they read this review – I prefer the soul shredders. This was one of those. Again.
Whilst “Candlemoth” I think will always remain my favourite Ellory novel for reasons that are purely personal, I would put Mockingbird Songs up there as another I shall return to several times. It just had that “something” – I think it was probably Henry if I’m honest – that means it will stay with me. Genuinely character driven, intriguing and always taking you inexorably towards a conclusion that hits hard for any number of reasons – this is another author I have made a lifetime commitment to.
Find out more here: http://www.rjellory.com/
Follow on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/rjellory
Purchase Information: https://www.waterstones.com/book/mockingbird-songs/r-j-ellory/9781409124238
Happy Reading Folks!