‘A SUCCESSFUL LAWYER IS FOUND MURDERED’
– Cruel Deeds
[ About the Book ]
Finn Fitzpatrick barely knows Mandy Breslin from the firm where they both work. Mandy moves in the privileged world of the senior partners’ clique. Finn keeps to herself.
But Mandy has secrets and, as Finn is drawn deeper into her dead colleague’s life, she soon discovers that Mandy’s not the only one at the firm hiding something.
As Finn uncovers a web of lies that comes very close to home, she quickly realises that Mandy’s killer might be nearer than she thinks. Who wanted Mandy dead? And who can Finn turn to, when she can’t trust anyone?
[ My Review ]
Cruel Deeds by Catherine Kirwan was published February 3rd with Hachette Ireland and is the second book in this series set in Cork City featuring solicitor Finn Fitzpatrick, following on from the very successful Darkest Truth.
Finn Fitzpatrick has worked for commercial law practice, McGrath Lynch Cleary, for over fifteen years. Not one to mix with the high-flyers of Cork’s legal fraternity, Finn is happiest in the solitude of her small tucked away office up in the attic space or what Finn affectionately calls ‘the servant’ quarters’
‘I don’t do much of the corporate stuff. We found out fast that that wasn’t where my talents, or my interests lay. Think legal dogsbody and you’re closer to the mark. Or general operative. Essentially, all the low-paying knobbly miscellaneous work that crops up in a big firm like ours that nobody else wants to do‘
In my review of Darkest Truth I referred to Cork City being a member of the cast and in Cruel Deeds the same applies. It’s something that is very important to Catherine Kirwan – “Basically I want anyone who reads my books to get a feel of what it’s like to be around Cork”– and this is very evident throughout the book. I even learnt a few bits about my own city along the way, especially in a chapter where Finn refers to The Marina
‘On summer evenings, this part of Blackrock has the feel of an imagined Italy about it. It’s no accident. The Marina, a long, raised, tree-lined riverside promenade built on reclaimed land sometime during the 1800s, was named by the city councillors after a similar construction near Palermo in Sicily, a place that few, if any of them, could ever have had any hope of visiting. Which probably tells you everything you need to know about Cork people’
(yes we do have notions 😉)
Cruel Deeds finds Finn caught up in a dangerous web of lies following the disappearance of Mandy Breslin, a work acquaintance in MLC (McGrath Lynch Cleary). When Mandy’s body is discovered in an abandoned house on the other side of the city, the partners are skittish. Why was Mandy murdered? What was she hiding? And, most importantly, how can the firm protect itself from the inevitable fallout? It is decided that Finn is best placed to lead the charge and she is set the immediate task of going through Mandy’s file to see if there is anything hidden that could negatively impact the firm’s reputation. Initially all looks above board but as Finn digs a little deeper she starts to see anomalies in Mandy Breslin’s perceived perfect life.
Finn has a way about her that encourages people to open up to her but she struggles in her own personal life, unable to fully trust and confide in others. Finn had a rough start in life but she is happy with her lot professionally. On a personal level she has her own concerns but Finn tries to separate the two until lines begin to cross and Finn has to ask questions of herself and her own relationships.
With short and snappy chapters, the intensity of the plot never lets up. Catherine Kirwan wraps the reader up in knots as we try to figure out who is innocent and who is guilty. The perfect read for anyone who loves a jigsaw, Cruel Deeds, is a complex and complicated tale of legal drama, whodunnits and jaw-dropping reveals. Finn Fitzpatrick is an excellently depicted main protagonist. She is a very independent character, someone who paddles her own canoe. She is feisty, efficient, focused and measured in her actions. She doesn’t have a wide circle of friends and spends quite a bit of time alone in a life that she has chosen for herself but there are moments when we see beneath the veneer and the loneliness that she ofttimes experiences. She is a loyal friend but an obstinate one, determined to unravel the truth and occasionally putting her own life at risk without too much consideration for her own personal safety.
Cruel Deeds is a murder mystery with amateur sleuth and legal eagle Finn Fitzpatrick always one step ahead of the pack. Featuring some rather slimy and nefarious characters, Catherine Kirwan drops red-herrings aplenty, leaving the reader confused, riveted and in awe of her ability to keep us titillated, thrilled and shocked. Highly recommend to all!
“What I can say is that when you’re reading the book, remember the words of the great PD James, ‘All the motives for murder are covered by the four ‘L’s: love, lust, loathing and lucre.’ I’m happy to report that every one of the four ‘L’s features strongly in Cruel Deeds!”
– Catherine Kirwan
(full article available at https://www.writing.ie/interviews/the-next-book-cruel-deeds-by-catherine-kirwan/)
[ Bio ]
Catherine Kirwan grew up in the parish of Fews, County Waterford. She studied law at University College Cork and she now lives in Cork City where she works as a solicitor.
Twitter – @catherinekirwan