When an abandoned lobster trawler is found adrift off the coast of Quebec’s Gaspé Peninsula, DS Joaquin Moralès begins a straightforward search for the boat’s missing captain, Angel Roberts – a rare female in a male-dominated world. But Moralès finds himself blocked at every turn – by his police colleagues, by fisheries bureaucrats, and by his grown-up son, who has turned up at his door with a host of his own personal problems.
When Angel’s body is finally discovered, it’s clear something very sinister is afoot, and Moralès and son are pulled into murky, dangerous waters, where old resentments run deep.
If you tuned in yesterday, you’d have seen that I read and reviewed Roxanne Bouchard’s first Orenda birthed book, We Were The Salt Of The Sea, if you missed it, you can find my thoughts here. Today is the day for my The Coral Bride review, again written by Roxanne and translated from French by David Warriner. Orenda Books kindly gifted me a proof of this second installment of the DS Moralés series (which I actually read before the first in the series, oops!) The Coral Bride is already available in ebook and you’re able to pre-order the paperback here, for its November release!
Another day, another review and today’s is The Coral Bride, the second in the Moralés series and my personal favourite because I read it first, it was my first trip to Gaspé Peninsula where I was introduced to the sleepy fishing community, characters that reoccurred in book 1 (or originated from, however you want to look at it) but it also creates a whole other layer of persona for DS Moralés especially as he is still haunted by aspects of We Were The Salt of the Sea. The Coral Bride is an absolutely stunning read, again with Roxanne’s penmanship creating lyrical prose with a dark tilt, poetic creation that is splashed with humour when you need it the most – these are points where you realise to breathe!
The series is that of crime fiction, mysteries wrapped around personal storylines – in book one we had Moralés marriage and rooted from that we have a personal voyage I suppose of self-understanding and worth, one where we see our protagonist connecting on a level with his oldest son who, too, is running away and shying from the emptiness of his home-life. The reconnection between the two men is warming, as father and son relationships can be. This aspect of the novel is mixed with an investigation, a death of a woman who is known throughout the village as the only female worker that’s successful in a male dominated world, one where the men despise her and the women are worried she’ll steal their husbands. This sets up for a enthralling gritty police procedural read, tied together with crime fiction tension and mystery – a 424 page chunky read that you will just want to get your teeth into and swallow whole.
Let’s talk Roxanne’s epic ability to create three dimensional characters who you can vividly imagine in your mind, to the point you can clearly hear their voices – each character that she has developed feels completely real! You’ll love some, dislike others but you can’t deny her absolute attention to detail when it comes to creating them and the village that they inhabit. The essence of the fishing village echoes throughout the pages and takes you there in your imagination, I loved every single chapter especially as it flicked between characters across the time frame. Also, I think this book contains one of my favourite first chapters, I was hooked from the get go and I look forward to future instalments of this series. Yet again, it’s been written impeccably and translated beautifully by David where it still holds the raw emotion and the haunting feeling throughout the whole read – I highly recommend The Coral Bride, I just know that you’re going to love it!
So there you have it, another #Orentober review and recommendation. Have you already read the ebook? What did you think? Please feel free to share reviews, thoughts, bookstagram pictures using the hashtag #Orentober, we would really love to see them.