Inspector Stephen Villani stands in a luxury apartment, a young woman dead in the bath. He finds certainties of his life crumbling after the discovery of this murder. His four months as the acting head of the Victoria Police homicide squad have not gone well; first, two Aboriginal teenagers are shot dead and there is also no progress on the killing of a man in front of his daughter. A novel about murder, corruption, treachery and ultimately the Truth.
I didn’t realise this was the sequel to The Broken Shore when I started this novel but seeing Inspector Stephen Villani was only a minor character in the first book I thought it was ok to continue. But I wonder if I should have read them in order, because Truth never really clicked with me.
The novel was very difficult to read and hold my attention; the flashbacks, the sheer amount of characters and attempts at complexity made it really difficult to know what is what in this novel. It tried to be a gritty police procedural with some political aspects but never really seemed to click. While the main plot could have worked well, the flashbacks and cast size turned this book into a difficult book.
I’m surprised this book won the Miles Franklin award; I know a lot of people that loved The Broken Shore and hated this book so I can’t help but wonder if this book won based on the love of its predecessor. It was interesting to see Peter Temple’s character Jack Irish making an appearance in the book.
I just don’t see the appeal to this book but it wasn’t the writing style that made this book so hard to read. While this is the first Peter Temple book I’ve read, I can see why he is one of Australia’s better crime writers. I will try The Broken Shore sometime just to see why one was so loved and this one was so hated.