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Reviewed by Natalie Soine for Readers' Favorite
Belfast: A Time to Die by Brian Wilson is a gripping historical fiction novel that unfolds against the turbulent backdrop of 1970s Northern Ireland. The narrative follows Danny, Liam, and Sean as they embark on a perilous mission to dismantle the infamous Shankill Butcher gang, led by Lenny Murphy. However, their plan goes awry, leading to the arrest of Danny, Liam, and Sean. The repercussions echo through the decades, shaping the destinies of the characters in unforeseen ways. Danny's wife, Deidre, and son Sean are banished to Australia. The aftermath sees Deidre and Sean relocating to New Zealand, facing new challenges and twists of fate. Sean eventually becomes a renowned fiction writer and encounters a series of startling events in Christchurch. The arrival of his cousin Paddy, a surprise visit from his sister Colleen, and a mysterious stranger shadowing him unravel a complex web of connections that tie back to the violent past of Belfast.
Brian Wilson weaves a poignant tale of family, revenge, and the enduring impact of historical conflicts. Sean and his family grapple with the legacy of the Belfast troubles, and the story explores the lengths people will go to seek retribution. The author blends suspense, emotion, and historical resonance, keeping readers on the edge of their seats until the shocking conclusion. In Belfast: A Time to Die, the author captures the essence of a tumultuous era, delving into the complexities of human relationships and the far-reaching consequences of political strife. The story serves as a powerful reminder that in the face of adversity, the human spirit can endure, but at what cost? Wilson's meticulous attention to historical detail makes this novel a compelling and thought-provoking read, recommended to all adults.