Monday, 4 April 2011

The Dark Tide by Josh Lanyon (Adrien English 5)

The Dark Tide is the fifth and last book in Josh Lanyon's Adrien English series. And it keeps up the trend of Adrien inadvertently tangling himself up in a murder investigation. This time though, it's really not his fault...really. In the midst of renovating his bookstore a skeleton is discovered in the floorboards. When it proves to be over fifty years old, the case is handed over to the cold case squad. But Adrien's curiosity has been caught - could be something to do with the burglar who keeps breaking into the store - so he hires his ex-lover Jake Riordan (now working as a private detective) to investigate.

The Dark Tide opens shortly after the end of Death of a Pirate King (Book 4). Adrien has still not fully recovered form his heart surgery and is slightly resentful. His situation has changed and he's having to re-evaluate his life and he hasn't quite found his footing yet. I think this also explains why he's a little obtuse a little bit blinkered where Jake is concerned. He also has a new step-family who worry about him and who he worries about. He has old lovers popping up out of the proverbial woodwork and he has a fifty-year old skeleton in his floorboards.

What I loved most about this book is how Adrien and Jake have changed. Both characters have evolved over the course of the series. I think on a second read-through you'd appreciate more how Jake and Adrien are out of sync at the beginning of the book. Now Jake's out of the closet, he's mellowed a little. Whereas Adrien is more uptight - it's as if they're finally meeting in the middle.

All the things I love most about the series are here. Adrien's snarky inner voice,
I resisted the temptation to undo my apology by throttling her.
I wanted him so much, I could have cried. I wanted him now, and I wanted it to be three years ago when I had loved him without fear...
...and also brilliant dialogue:-
She summoned her patience. "I said perhaps this friend would be willing to act as your support partner."
"I don't think so."
"We never know until we ask."
"Sometimes we do."
And I realise how much I'm going to miss this series.

I also really like how Adrien has gone from being an only child, to having siblings. He doesn't have a perfect relationship with his stepsisters. But it's a very familial and loving relationship, with all the dramas that that entails.

I think this book ties up all the loose ends from earlier in the series but leaves it quite open as well. When I first finished the book I was a little uncertain about the ending. But having thought about it, I think it works, everything's resolved but it isn't all tied up with a nice pretty pink bow on the top. And I think it's better for that.

I've consistently said that A Dangerous Thing (Book 2) is my favourite Adrien English story. I think Jenre posted (possibly on my review of Book 4 or one of my other posts about this series) that The Dark Tide would change my opinion. And she's right. The Dark Tide is now my favourite Adrien English book and I look forward to re-reading the series again, in the not too distant future, reading it from the perspective of knowing how it will end. And I console myself with the fact that there are still many Josh Lanyon books for me to read.


Tracy said...

Man I loved this one. Books 4 and 5 have to be my favs of the series. Glad you enjoyed it as much as I did!

LesleyW said...

Tracey - I always thought Book 2 would be my favourite of the series. But it's definitely book 5. :) I just loved how everything was tied together.

Stephanie said...

I waited a long time before I read the last book in the series because I was so nervous about how it would end. But, I loved everything about it! I was pleasantly surprised to see the changes in Adrien and Jake. Should definitely check out Lanyon's other books.

Renee said...

Yes, an A+, indeed. And, as much as I'll miss more Adrien, I think the way his series ended makes me content. Hey, I can always re-read the series (again) if I want more Adrien and Jake. ;-)

Catching up on some VERY overdue blog hopping. It's great to read your review, Lesley!

LesleyW said...

Stephanie - I waited for the same reason, but I loved the last book and am looking forward to re-reading the series in the future.

Renee - thank you. And I am also struggling with blogging this year. Keep resolving to do better.