Death at Christy Burke’s
"Halifax lawyer Anne Emery’s terrific series featuring lawyer Monty Collins and priest Brennan Burke gets better with every book." — Globe and Mail
There’s a killer on the premises of Christy Burke’s pub in Dublin, according to graffiti spray-painted on the wall. Father Brennan Burke, Christy’s grandson, is asked to investigate the vandalism. Brennan has been tending the bar a bit himself and is not all that keen on probing into the lives of his clientele. But he has little choice once a body is found and the property investigation becomes a murder inquiry.
The pub’s current owner, issuing orders from his cell in Mountjoy Prison, wants the problem solved, and for reasons of his own does not want the police anywhere near the building. Brennan enlists the help of his pal Monty Collins and fellow priest Michael O’Flaherty, and the three of them uncover dark secrets in the lives of the pub regulars, secrets some might kill for.
For Brennan, the murder investigation is overshadowed by even more ominous events in Belfast, events that may be coming home to roost in Christy Burke’s. Sinister figures are spotted in and around the pub, people are being followed in the street, and Brennan comes to possess explosive information that he cannot reveal to security forces or to anyone else. Brennan is compelled to take a hard look at Irish history and his family’s place in it, and Michael’s sunny optimism about his ancestral home is about to be sorely tested, when an act of violence in Northern Ireland sends out shock waves that reverberate all the way to Dublin.
About the Collins-Burke Mysteries
This multi-award-winning series is centred around two main characters who have been described as endearingly flawed: Monty Collins, a criminal defence lawyer who has seen and heard it all, and Father Brennan Burke, a worldly, hard-drinking Irish-born priest. The priest and the lawyer solve mysteries together, but sometimes find themselves at cross-purposes, with secrets they cannot share: secrets of the confessional, and matters covered by solicitor-client confidentiality. The books are notable for their wit and humour, and their depiction of the darker side of human nature ? characteristics that are sometimes combined in the same person, be it a lawyer, a witness on the stand, or an Irish ballad singer who doubles as a guerrilla fighter in the Troubles in war-torn Belfast. In addition to their memorable characters, the books have been credited with a strong sense of place and culture, meticulous research, crisp and authentic dialogue, and intriguing plots. The novels are set in Nova Scotia, Ireland, England, Italy, New York, and Germany. The series begins with Sign of the Cross (2006) and continues to the most recent installment, Postmark Berlin (2020).
Anne Emery is a graduate of Dalhousie Law School. She has worked as a lawyer, legal affairs reporter, and researcher. She lives in Halifax, NS, with her husband and daughter. The other books in the Collins-Burke mystery series are Sign of the Cross, winner of the 2007 Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel; Obit (2007); Barrington Street Blues (2008); Cecilian Vespers (2009); and Children in the Morning (2010).