(Image from Barnes & Noble)
When a suspicious death occurs on a remote island in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Sime Mackenize finds himself on a bumpy flight to the Magdalen Islands. A homicide detective for Montreal's Sûreté de Police, Sime is part of an 8-person investigation team (which includes his ex-wife) taxed with figuring out how wealthy lobsterman James Cowell died. The answer seems pretty obvious. Not only was Kirsty Cowell discovered with her husband's blood all over her, but her tale of an armed intruder killing James reeks of falsity. A homicide has never occurred before on tiny Entry Island—what motivated this one? If Kirsty Cowell murdered her husband, why did she do it?
No one on the investigative team believes Kirsty Cowell's story. Even Sime finds it far-fetched. So why does he want so badly for Kirsty to be innocent? Still mourning the dissolution of his marriage, Sime is also plagued by insomnia. Does this explain the visions he's suddenly having of himself and Kirsty living a life together in another time and place? Or is Sime simply going mad?
Desperate to clear the widow's name, Sime vows to get to the bottom of Entry Island's first homicide. What he finds are big secrets on a little island. As he struggles to solve the crime, decipher his visions, and fight his obsession with a woman he barely knows, Sime must convince his team to look closer at a puzzling, more-than-meets-the-eye mystery. His subjectivity could cost him his job, but he has to find the truth. Kirsty Cowell did not kill her husband. Or did she?
I discovered Scottish mystery writer Peter May this year and have been reading through his books as fast as I can. Like his other novels, Entry Island features a stark and desolate place populated by complex, intriguing characters. Sime reminds me a little too much of Fin Macleod (the hero of May's Lewis Trilogy); I would have liked him to have a more distinct personality. That's a minor complaint, though, since I found the rest of the novel so absorbing. The back-and-forth in time gave it an extra layer of intrigue, which serves to make the plot even more compelling. As with May's other novels, I whipped through Entry Island and enjoyed it very much. Bottom line: I'm a fan. If May writes it, there's an excellent chance I'll read it.
(Readalikes: Reminds me of other books by Peter May, including his Lewis Trilogy [The Blackhouse; The Lewis Man; The Chessmen] and Coffin Road)
If this were a movie, it would be rated:
for strong language, violence, blood/gore, and mild sexual content
To the FTC, with love: Another library