‘A young woman lies in a coma in the wake of a brutal attack. Under pressure for a quick solve, detectives Ryan and Kane soon find themselves at odds – and overshadowed by past deeds…’
– While She Sleeps
[ About the Book ]
When Jody Kavanagh is discovered close to death in her home, it’s hard to believe someone wanted to hurt her. Young, talented, loved – she appears to have it all.
As she lies in a coma, Detective Inspector Elliot Ryan and Sergeant Nola Kane begin to piece together a picture of her life – but the image revealed is far from perfect. Is her ex-husband really who he seems to be? Why are her mother and sister estranged? Why is her house full of cameras? Who was Jody afraid of?
Haunted by guilt and in chronic pain, DI Ryan has his own demons. And Kane, who is recovering from an incident where the professional and personal overlapped, needs to prove herself.
From the shaky glamour of Irish high society to the cold heart of two broken families, Ryan and Kane must work against hidden forces to restore their reputations and find who wanted to kill Jody – and why.
[ My Review ]
While She Sleeps by Arlene Hunt was published August 4th with Hachette Ireland and has been described wonderfully by Liz Nugent as ‘page-turning grit lit’.
Detective Inspector Elliot Ryan is back on duty following an incident that left him with debilitating injuries. His daughter has moved in with him to help him back on his feet but is frustrated by her father’s insistence that everything is ok. Clearly not sufficiently recovered to be back working, he refuses to take any more time out as he has a score he needs to settle.
Sergeant Nola Kane returns from suspended leave aggrieved and frustrated. Temporarily removed from Homicide she is put into Ryan’s division, which covers theft and burglary. Kane is angry. She feels betrayed by an ex-colleague and is sick of her life. She is also very much aware of the fact that she is twenty-six and still living at home with her mother. Ryan is pedantic and Kane is more informal. She feels suffocated by Ryan’s work methods, a man unkindly nicknamed ‘the fossil’ by other members of the squad.
When Jody Kavanagh is found by her ex-husband, early one morning, in a pool of blood, Ryan and Kane are sent to investigate. With life-threatening injuries she is taken to hospital and put in an induced coma. Nothing has been stolen and the husband denies all culpability. The only obvious thing missing is Jody’s mobile phone. There are cameras dotted around her house and, with the added security of a protective and well-trained dog, Ryan and Kane are left wondering who really is Jody Kavanagh.
Jody Kavanagh is a designer with a reputation that is well recognised. She socialises among the higher echelons of society and grew up part of a wealthy Irish family. All fingers point to her ex-husband as Ryan and Kane start to question her associates but Ryan is slow to jump to conclusions. There is something fishy about this case. There clearly is more to Jody Kavanagh than meets the eye and Ryan, with Kane, soon realise that there is something much darker at play here.
Ryan and Kane are both on shaky ground. Their personalities are polar opposite and, at the beginning, neither really understands the other. But as time passes, their bond develops and, with a little trust, they begin to work a little better together, unpicking the lies and the secrets of this complex case.
Ryan has a personal axe to grind with someone and, in his own time, is gathering information to finally put to bed some outstanding business. We get a general insight into his history and why he is the man he is today and I am hoping (Please Arlene Hunt!) that we have not seen the last of Detective Inspector Elliot Ryan. I would love to read a prequel to While She Sleeps, delving further into his early days in the force. He is a fascinating, yet troubled, individual.
Sergeant Nola Kane is brilliantly cast as a no-nonsense, say it like it is, impetuous character. She is the perfect balance to Ryan’s stilted and formal personality, together making a great team. They really have a brilliant dynamic that just works so I hope we see them together again in the not so distant future
While She Sleeps is a highly enjoyable tale with plenty of red-herrings that will leave you stumped on more than one occasion. A well-paced plot with a very authentic cast of characters While She Sleeps is a right cracker of a read and one I am very happy to recommend!
[ Bio ]
Arlene Hunt is an author and film reviewer. While She Sleeps is her twelfth novel. A somewhat slow long-distance runner, when not writing, Arlene can usually be found halfway up a mountain with two German Shepherds for company. She lives in Dublin.
Twitter ~ @arlenehunt