A harmless English ex-pat retiree is strangled in his rural cottage. In this second of the Inspector Minogue series, Arthur Combs is found murdered, the life choked out of him by a rope around his neck and a knee between his shoulder-blades. The method is obvious, but the motive is far less evident. As an English expatriate retiree in Dublin, the decrepit seventy-three year old Combs lived a solitary existence with few friends, but no enemies. Or so it seems when Sergeant Minogue is assigned to the case. As the investigation gathers momentum, however, it is soon clear that this ‘terrible ordinary man’ is of extraordinary importance to British Intelligence. London’s MI5 Security Service is terrified about secrets Combs knew and threatened to reveal, secrets that could spark a major scandal and derail top-level talks between Britain and Ireland. When MI5 tries to put a lid on the Combs affair, they underestimate the tenacity of the unorthodox Minogue. Even if it means going up against the Prime Minister, Minogue is determined to discover what Britain’s spy masters are doing in Dublin. 'Dublin’s answer to Maigret - a handsomely written, dark journey into Irish politics. Brady is a master of the telling detail.’ - Kirkus Reviews (U.S.) 'A non-generic political novel rich in substance and raw with pain.’ - New York Times
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A native of Dublin, John divides his time between Ireland and Canada, where he and his wife Hanna raise their family. Growing up in Ireland, with a mother from the west of Ireland and a father from Dublin, home was where talk and imagination and character were at to the core of life. Everyone had a story, a song, a joke. John continues to follow the lure of travel. rambling in Ireland’s Burren or Dublin's streets, or hill-walking in southern Austria. Trained as a teacher, he still goes by the axiom that only that which is useless, or can’t be taught, is irresistible.From Kirkus Reviews:
Dublin's answer to Maigret, Sergeant Matt Minogue (introduced in the provocative A Stone of the Heart, 1988), in trying to sort out the murder by strangling of a rambling tippler, 73-year-old Englishman Arthur Combs, finds himself in the middle of a WW II spy cover-up involving MI6. Anxious about incriminating bits that Combs may have left behind, the English send a man in to dog Minogue's investigation. Soon Combs's former contact, Ball, is murdered by Irish terrorists; Combs's secret data is retrieved from an out-to- pasture horse; and Minogue's simple murder case is overrun by nefarious British intelligence types who--with more murder on their minds--want to keep the lid on Combs's wartime activities and the dastardly lengths his superiors went to keep him at them. By the time Minogue pieces together Combs's story, several more have died; the British embassy is busy ferrying its wounded warriors back home; and Minogue is recommended for promotion. A handsomely written, dark journey into Irish politics and English duplicity. Brady is a master of the telling detail, and within the framework of the political novel, has created memorable characters, most especially the estimable Minogue. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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