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Gallows Lane (Inspector Devlin #2)

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  793 Ratings  ·  72 Reviews
The heart-stopping follow-up to Brian McGilloway’s thrilling debut, Gallows Lane continues the compelling series that captures modern Ireland and showcases a striking new voice in crime writing.

In his critically acclaimed debut, Borderlands, Brian McGilloway opened a window onto modern Ireland through the eyes of Garda Inspector Benedict Devlin, drawing comparisons to John
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published September 29th 2009 by Minotaur Books (first published January 1st 2008)
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Sep 26, 2009 Jen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspector Benedict "Ben" Devlin has a babysitting assignment in GALLOWS LANE. James Kerr has been released from jail and Devlin's superintendent, Costello, wants Kerr to stay in Northern Ireland. Devlin's job is to convince him to do so. However, Kerr has a mission. He needs to see "a man" to get something "off his chest." Then he'll be gone, he assures Devlin. But shortly thereafter people start dying unnaturally. Kerr is the prime suspect until he is crucified on Gallows Lane. Devlin is determ ...more
First Sentence: James Kerr returned to Lifford on a blustery morning in May, shuffling under the heavy clouds that scudded across the sky towards the North.

DI Benedict Devlin has a lot to deal with. He as been asked to keep an eye on recent parole James Kerr and encourage him to leave the area.. Kerr claims here’s not there to commit crimes but first to talk to someone. But people Kerr knew start to die and Kerr, himself, if found murdered. Two girls have been drugged and beaten; and one died. D
Rob Kitchin
It took me a little while to get into Gallows Lane. The first 100 pages or so seemed ponderous, and somehow lacking, and I wasn’t sure about some of the police organisation and procedural elements. Slowly, however, I was drawn ever further into the book, all the careful groundwork laid out in the early stages gaining its significance as the various threads are pulled ever tighter. McGilloway’s skill is in the plotting and sense of place. He weaves several subplots in and through each other, alth ...more
Michael Martz
'Gallows Lane' is Brian McGilloway's 2nd in his Inspector Devlin series and the last I'll read. It's a decent procedural (although with some glaring dumb spots) and not a bad book, but ultimately the writing is just too bland. It's the Irish equivalent of Sgt. Joe Friday narrating a Dragnet episode in book form.

Borderlands, McGilloway's first, was marginally more interesting in that it was more 'Irish' and had a bit more rogue-ish behavior on Devlin's part. In Gallow's Lane, he has a few 'outsi
This is the second in the Inspector Devlin series. As all detectives we love, Devlin breaks rules and is determined to get evidence and get the guilty parties put away. In this book, he is still partners with the female colleague who gets into trouble in Book 4. Working on the Donegal border with Northern Ireland, criminals easily move back and forth during peacetime creating even more headaches for Devlin. The past is never far removed in this series, especially the legacy of The Troubles. Devl ...more
May 13, 2014 Melody rated it liked it
There is murder and police work among the backdrop of Ireland. Not my favorite. I'll let McGilloway alone.
3.5 stars

This is book #2 in the DI Ben Devlin series & continues where the last one left off. Ben is stationed in Lifford, one of the towns that sit along the border between the south & British ruled north.There is a cast of returning characters & although it helps if you know the history behind their relationships, its
not necessary to read the first book to enjoy this.
As usual, there are several concurrent story lines. Ben's boss Superintendent "Olly" Costello is retiring & wan
Oct 30, 2014 Mary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes contemporary mysteries
Recommended to Mary by: Library Book Sale
It's summertime in the Irish borderlands, and the Donegal summer dawns surprisingly hot for Garda Inspector Benedict Devlin. Inspector Devlin returns to the border separating Donegal from the North of Ireland, waiting for a notorious ex-con named James Kerr to return home on early release. He claims to have found God while in prison, but Superintendent Costello - the superintendent of police, isn't taking any chances with the born-again Christian's fount of newfound grace. Inspector Devlin's ord ...more
Nov 14, 2009 Caitlin rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2009
This is the second book in a new police procedural series by Irish crime writer Brian McGilloway. The series features An Garda Inspector Benedict Devlin - a policeman in the borderlands between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The first book in the series was Borderlands and it was a decent first outing. Sometimes the second book lags behind the first, but that is not the case with this one. If anything, Gallows Lane is a better book.

This books contains hidden evidence, death threat
Mar 14, 2014 Bridget rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-reads
This is the second book in a series featuring Benedict Devlin, a detective in the Garda who is stationed in a town in the Republic of Ireland that borders Northern Ireland. In this installment, Devlin is facing a wife who wants him to pull back on his work, feeling they are in danger, as well as facing a promotion interview.

He is also trying to keep track of James Kerr, who has been released from prison in the North. Kerr has "found God," and has returned to the Republic "on a mission," which he
Feb 08, 2010 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-crime
Ben Devlin is a good copper, in the best sense. He's also a devoted husband and father, and, in Gallows Lane, he struggles to reconcile his two chief roles in life. To complicate matters, he lives in the "borderlands", where Northern Ireland and the Republic bump right into each other.

Ben's trying to be fair to a newly released ex-con, whom he's been assigned to shoo up to the north, when a murder occurs on his turf, at a housing development that's being raised on land that's seen its fair shar
A. Mary
Aug 04, 2014 A. Mary rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: irish-novels
The novel opens with the return of James, a convicted gang member, released from prison. He's the only one who was caught and convicted of a robbery, and as he walks back into town, he's met by Inspector Devlin. A string of killings ensues, but James seems to have returned to make his peace. Devlin and his colleagues have to connect the dots, of course, including what all the bodies have in common. The subplot focuses on a serial attacker who brutally beats the women he accosts. McGilloway conti ...more
In this second Inspector Devlin procedural, Devlin is up for promotion to superintendent, but so is a fellow officer at his station. A recently released convict and convert to evangelical Christianity has returned to town to make amends with the gang that left him to take the fall for a robbery gone wrong. When one of the former gang members is found murdered, all evidence points to him. Yet soon he turns up dead. So who is behind the murderers and what does a hidden cache of weapons and drugs h ...more
John Sheridan
Dec 22, 2011 John Sheridan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
second book in series by Brian McGilloway featuring Garda Inspector Benedict Devlin stationed on the border of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. you might expect given the location that paramilitaries may feature and they do but mainly in the past tense as they have now become respectable (?) businessmen. Devlin is different to most crime fiction detectives as he's happily married with children but as what appears to be relatively straight forward case degenerates quickly to cover as ...more
Dec 31, 2012 Eric_W rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspector Devlin gets strict instructions from his boss, DCI Costello, to send Jamie Kerr back across the border. He doesn't and what follows is one busted investigation after another. Devlin makes a lot of mistakes, chases rabbits down the wrong warren hole, and generally misses the boat (overdid the metaphors, I think, but you get the picture. Nevertheless, he's a very sympathetic character.

The plot revolves around several seemingly unconnected events: the brutal unrequited rape of several gir
The second in this police procedural series set in the north of Ireland on the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. With the politics and religion a constant background, Inspector Devlin is asked to keep an eye on a just-released prisoner who served time for a bank robbery. However, that task falls to the side as the body of a young woman is found on a construction site.

Once again, the past reaches forward.

Inspector Devlin's character is starting to round out: the stress
Tim Niland
Feb 27, 2010 Tim Niland rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010-reads
Inspector Benedict Devlin of the Irish Gardai police force patrols the tense borderlands between the Republic of Ireland and Nothern Ireland. When a convicted robber returns to the south after supposedly finding God, Devlin is told by his supervisors to encourage the man to return North. This unravels a spiraling series of events that includes the finding of a large cache of weapons and drugs, and murder. This was a well written police procedural, offering a glimpse of how Ireland is changing af ...more
Jan 21, 2016 Sam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having thoroughly enjoyed McGilloway's debut 'Borderlands', I knew I would be revisiting with Detective Inspector Benedict Devlin. The only mistake I made was taking so long.

'Gallows Lane' is a classic crime novel with great characters and excellent dialogue. An engaging, well written, fast paced read. I particularly enjoy the Lifford/Strabane setting, and a lead detective that defies the loner, alcoholic cliche, as he juggles his work with a stable family life.

Looking forward to his next invest
Catherine Woodman
This is a good one. Devlin gets himself into hot water at work and at home for a variety of reasons, then there is the string of murders that he is trying to (and eventually does) solve. It is a well written book, a reasonably intricate plot, and as is my want, there is a balance between what the investigator does in his work life and his home life, so it keeps you interested in the guy who is going to show up again in the next book.
A book enhanced by my having been to this area last month - deliberately diverting to drive through Lifford and Strabane - but, I am somewhat ashamed to say that to have a happily married, praying, largely-undamaged cop as narrator, even though he does cheat a little with the evidence, detracts from the tale - it's all a bit bland.
Which does not at all mean you'd have to twist my arm to encourage me to read more.
Jul 20, 2010 Patricia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Picked this book up randomly at the library and found myself a new series to follow! Benedict Devlin is a Detective Inspector in a border town of Donegal. The writing is concise, the characters convincing and interesting and I enjoyed the plot. I am now reading the first in the series (Borderlands) and am looking forward to more.
Nov 05, 2013 Ryan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was surprised not to like it and made a good effort to, but there were sections I simply had to skip. I am fine with a certain pig-headedness, but Devlin's stupid got to be to much. The interesting borderland angle was used up in the first book and this one was just...tedious. I didn't even care who the bad guy was by the end.
Joy Keifer
Dec 23, 2015 Joy Keifer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good read

This is my second to read as I started with the first in the series. I enjoy Mr. McGilloway's style and characters and would recommend it to others who like crime fiction. The chapters each comprising a day in the investigation was new to me. I quite like how it defines the story.
Jul 27, 2016 Myrna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5/5 stars. I don't know if it was because I interrupted my reading of this book to go on holidays or not, but towards the end I was having a hard time keeping track of all the characters, and this is not something that usually causes me difficulty. This one felt more modern to me than Borderlands.
Jun 28, 2012 Katharine rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Interestingly dark mystery with an Irish border setting. Ben Devlin is a very likeable detective and it is refreshing to read about a cop with young children. Looking forward to reading more in this series.
Ann Tonks
Apr 06, 2016 Ann Tonks rated it really liked it
Picked it up at a $5 shop so didn't have high expectations but a great read. The front description on my edition is accurate - "a clever web of intrigue that deepens, and darkens, as it twists". Plus a hero with a family and a conscience.
Gary Van Cott
This is a good book, but the characters and possibly the writing lack that extra spark to move it up into the category with some of my favorites such as the books by Reginald Hill and Deborah Crombie.
A good second outing for DI Benedict Devlin who works the Irish side of the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland. The plotting was good, the setting was interesting, and really my only complaint was that I wish the writing was a bit tighter.
Nov 21, 2016 Siobhan marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: to-read-owned
Quick question: do these need to be read in order?

I brought a box set of books because it was cheaper than ordering the single book I wanted, and I was curious as to whether I needed to read the prior book to understand this one.

Thanks to anyone capable of answering!
Apr 23, 2015 Diana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book number 2 of the Inspector Devlin Series & even better than the first! This is not only a great police procedural mystery, but it is also a great look at the mind of a very flawed human being, who happens to be a cop. Love the setting of Northern Ireland, too. Highly recommended.
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Brian McGilloway is an author hailing from Derry, Northern Ireland. He studied English at Queens University Belfast, where he was very active in student theatre, winning a prestigious national Irish Student Drama Association award for theatrical lighting design in 1996. He is currently Head of English at St. Columb's College, Derry. McGilloway's debut novel was a crime thriller called Borderlands. ...more
More about Brian McGilloway...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Devlin (5 books)
  • Borderlands (Inspector Devlin, #1)
  • Bleed a River Deep (Inspector Devlin, #3)
  • The Rising (Inspector Devlin, #4)
  • The Nameless Dead (Inspector Devlin, #5)

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