Hazel Micallef (played by Susan Sarandon in the recent film of the series' debut, The Calling ) has become one of crime writing's most memorable detectives.Read more...
Hazel Micallef (played by Susan Sarandon in the recent film of the series' debut, The Calling) has become one of crime writing's most memorable detectives. The Night Bell moves between the past and the present in Port Dundas, Ontario, as two mysteries converge. A discovery of the bones of murdered children is made on land that was once a county foster home. Now it's being developed as a brand new subdivision whose first residents are already railing against broken promises and corruption. But when three of these residents are murdered after the discovery of the children's bones, frustration turns to terror.
While trying to stem the panic and solve two crimes at once, Hazel Micallef finds her memory stirred back to the fall of 1959, when the disappearance of a girl from town was blamed on her adopted brother. Although he is long dead, she begins to see the present case as a chance to clear her brother's name, something that drives Hazel beyond her own considerable limits and right into the sights of an angry killer.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-05-30
- Reviewer: Staff
The pseudonymous Wolfe’s provocative yet ponderous fourth Hazel Micallef mystery (after 2012’s Door in the River) highlights the mistreatment of those at the margins. After residents of a new housing development in Port Dundas, Ontario, begin finding bones in their yards, the police comb an adjacent field. Behind an old orphanage that abuts it, they discover bones from 18 adolescent boys, all of them murder victims. Meanwhile, an officer is kidnapped, and three people associated with the development are savagely murdered. The Mounties take over the case, displacing Hazel and her team, but the 64-year-old detective inspector remains determined to identify the dead children, rescue her colleague, and bring past and present criminals to justice. Flashbacks to 1957 follow 14-year-old Hazel’s efforts to locate a missing teenager. Factual and thematic ties bind the two story lines and provide the foundation for a sprawling mystery with emotional heft, but Wolfe’s attempts to raise stakes and add a ticking clock render the plot improbable. Agent: Ellen Levine, Trident Literary. (Aug.)