A BROKEN SHORE (Police Procedural-Australia-Cont) – Poor

Temple, Peter – Standalone

Quercus, 2006- UK Hardcover

Detective Joe Cushin is recovering from his injuries at his hometown in South Eastern Australia. He is there to run a one-man police station and is rebuilding the wreck of a home begun by his grandfather. A brutal attack on a local man is quickly blamed on a three young men from the Aboriginal community. When the plan to arrest and question one of the young men goes deathly wrong, Cushin starts taking a hard look at what is really going on.

This book has received a lot of great reviews. Unfortunately, it didn’t work for me because of one main element—character development. The author doles out bits of Cushing, and other characters, past in very small doses well into the story. I found this incredibly distracting as it left me with the feeling I was starting a series in the middle and needed to read previous books. Unfortunately, there were no previous books with Cushin. I don't mind learning about a character as I go, but this felt too divisive to me, almost in the some vein as the cliff hanger at the end of the chapter. His reference to the background of a policewoman was almost a casual "okay, I'll throw this in to make her interesting" manner. For me, it destroyed the flow of the story and would cause me to stop reading. But, because of all the positive reviews, I continued and put aside my need for character development and just read for story, which was better. I did get into the plot, although it took me awhile. At a certain point I definitely saw where it was going, but the climax was suspenseful and somewhat horrific; however, a couple elements of the very ending where disappointing. Many people loved this book; I didn’t.

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