The Trust – by Ronald Balson


The Trust by Ronald Balson

Hardcover: 368 pages

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press (Sept. 19 2017)

ISBN-13: 978-1250127440

Synopsis: The newest novel from Ronald H. Balson, the international bestselling author of Once We Were Brothers, finds private investigator Liam Taggart returning to his childhood home for an uncle’s funeral, only to discover his death might not have been natural.

When his uncle dies, Liam Taggart reluctantly returns to his childhood home in Northern Ireland for the funeral―a home he left years ago after a bitter confrontation with his family, never to look back. But when he arrives, Liam learns that not only was his uncle shot to death, but that he’d anticipated his own murder: In an astonishing last will and testament, Uncle Fergus has left his entire estate to a secret trust, directing that no distributions be made to any person until the killer is found. Did Fergus know, but refuse to name, his killer? Was this a crime of revenge, a vendetta leftover from Northern Ireland’s bloody sectarian war? After all, the Taggarts were deeply involved in the IRA. Or is it possible that the killer is a family member seeking Fergus’s estate? Otherwise, why postpone distributions to the heirs? Most menacingly, does the killer now have his sights on other family members?

As his investigation draws Liam farther and farther into the past he has abandoned, he realizes he is forced to reopen doors long ago shut and locked. Now, accepting the appointment as sole trustee of the Fergus Taggart Trust, Liam realizes he has stepped into the center of a firestorm.

* * *

I was so excited to receive and read this book as a long time fan of Ronald Balson that I ended up reading the book in a day. The Trust centers on a murder/mystery plot in Northern Ireland and Liam and Catherine are back; the main characters from his previous 3 novels, whose relationship always played as a sub-plot in his previous books. Seeing how their relationship developed and evolved since Balson’s first novel, Once We Were Brothers, was nice – but it has always been Balson’s main story plot that has kept me reading.

This book had a different focus than his previous books (which were all Holocaust centred) but Balson’s amazing story telling skills continued to shine as the mystery revolving the death of Liam’s uncle kept me going. It was great to read a book that focused on Liam/Catherine versus seeing them as secondary characters who help the main characters. I feel that with every book, Balson becomes a better and more creative author and his writing becomes more unique.

However, since I read Balson’s first book, Once We Were Brothers, there is always that feeling that something is missing.  That thing missing will also be the voice of Ben Soloman; the main character in Once We Were Brothers. This character will forever be Balson’s best creation in my opinoin – but this book was very enjoyable anyways!

Rating: 9/10

* I received this book from St. Martin’s Press in exchange for a review*


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