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Truth (Broken Shore #2 (prequel))

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  1,164 ratings  ·  178 reviews
At the close of a long day, Inspector Stephen Villani stands in the bathroom of a luxury apartment high above the city. In the glass bath, a young woman is dead.

So begins Truth, the sequel to Peter Temple's bestselling masterpiece, The Broken Shore.
Paperback, 287 pages
Published October 28th 2009 by Text Publishing (first published 2009)
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Update. I gave this to an English friend who read it at that hasty speed that means she couldn't put it down. One of the comments she made afterwoods was 'Is food really like that?' She was struck by how ordinary people seemed to have very sophisticated tastes. The answer is 'yes'. That's why I've been having so much trouble in the UK where food, not to put to fine a point upon it, sucks.

Same with coffee. I don't drink it, but judging by the impressions I get from my many world experienced frien...more
Stephen Villani is no angel. He is many things, but the most important thing to him is that he is the head of homicide in Melbourne, Australia.

This book is his story and who he is, where he came from, and how he got there. It is more, but that is the loooong and short of it. Lots of information about politics in Austraila, and within the police ranks. It is several murder mysteries all wrapped up together and around Villani and his police cronies, upper bosses, former cops, his family, his fathe...more
Inspector Stephen Villani stands in a luxury apartment, a young woman dead in the bath. He finds certainties of his life crumbling after the discovery of this murder. His four months as the acting head of the Victoria Police homicide squad have not gone well; first, two Aboriginal teenagers are shot dead and there is also no progress on the killing of a man in front of his daughter. A novel about murder, corruption, treachery and ultimately the Truth.

I didn’t realise this was the sequel to The B...more
Nate Harrison
Television on. About a year ago. Anchorman segues into Miles Franklin Award, 2010. Peter Temple. Truth. Winner. Odd choice some say. Crime book and all. Others say he deserves it. Whose Miles Franklin?
I pass Angus and Robertson. The book is overpriced, glossy Miles Franklin Award emblem embossed on its cover. Ask the cashier if it's any good. 'Don't know,' she says. I buy it.

Detective Villani. Only man worth a damn on the hard streets of Melbourne. Book makes Melbourne seem like Detroit. No...more
Paula Weston
There’s a very good reason critics have been falling over themselves to praise Peter Temple’s new novel, Truth: it’s sublime.

It’s not often I read the last page of a book, close the cover and use an expletive to express how good it was. (The colourful language was partially a flow on of the abundance of profanity in the book, and mostly the fact it really was the best way to describe how impressed I was).

Temple is a master at fusing literary and genre writing. Truth is a gritty page-turning crim...more
readinghearts (Lyn M)
Nov 02, 2010 readinghearts (Lyn M) rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who like police procedurals
Recommended to readinghearts (Lyn M) by: Cam
Have you ever liked a book but not been able to put your finger on exactly why you liked it? This was that book for me. About a year and a half ago, a friend of mine had told me about another book written by Peter Temple titled The Broken Shore. I read that book, and liked the characters and stories. At the time, she told me that this book was coming out and that it had some of the same characters in it. As a result, I have waited for this book to come out for a long time. Mr. Temple is an Austr...more
Ok, I know that I will be out of step with the majority of Peter Temple lovers, but I did find his latest novel a bit of a trial. Yes, it does do the grittiness of the Aussie crime/police scene very well, but do all Australians really talk so cryptically and use so few words? Would a few sentences with verbs, nouns a...nd other assorted bits of grammar really be too much to ask for? I'm sure that some of us actually do talk in full sentences when communicating with others. That said, Villani as...more
John Barth
Violent crimes, hard cops, Aussie slang mixed with a touch of Affliction and raging brush fires. At the same time it was really hard to care for the characters.
I couldn't put this book down. Had trouble with some of the vernacular, set in Australia all the characters speak Aussie and it's a very different language sometimes. As in England and in the USA, certain english phrases and words have very different meanings than in Canada. I had to re-read sentences sometimes, which was a pleasure. The language is alive and colourful.

This is a dark, complex crime mystery focused on Stephen Villani, Head of Homicide in Victoria. Villani is at a crossroads with...more
This book was suppose to be a sequel to The Broken Shore but I found it very disappointing. I was hoping to find some answers about Cashin but he only had a small cameo appearance in the book and the main character in Truth had a small bit part in The Broken Shore. So it isn't my idea of a sequel.

Now lets get onto the dissection of the the 'crime' part of the crime novel. Well, yes there is a gruesome crime that occurs but the book is more concerned about the main characters relationship with hi...more
Rob Kitchin
It took me a little while to get hooked into Truth. The story had a change in style from Temple’s previous novels somewhat similar to the transformation in James Ellroy’s work – the prose becoming starker, terser and sparser, yet still retaining its lyrical prose. For much of the first half of the book, the story is a succession of fragments, the reader dropped into scenes that lack backstory and context; it’s a bit like hearing a sequence of partial conversations between guarded protagonists an...more
Readable policy procedural, but not without flaws. Truth is a sort of sequel to Broken Shore, sort of, the protagonist is not Cashin, but Villani a peripheral character in Broken Shore; the setting is not rural, but a gothic, intensely corrupt, crime-ridden Melbourne. So it's more of a story set in the same universe, albeit a different part of it, than a true sequel. Villani heads the homicide division in the Melbourne police. There are of course a couple of murders that need solving, a naked wo...more
Ben Winch
Perplexing. Good, in many ways. Gripping. But 2 things bother me: the quality of the prose and the likeness of the setting. The prose? It's clumsy, all jagged edges and starkness, broken rules of grammar several-to-a-page masquerading as modernity. Unnecessary in such a straight-up crime novel, and it makes you wonder if the guy knows what he's doing or is just winging it. But worse than that, this is Melbourne?! This hotbed of crime, a place so dangerous that at one point the tough-guy protagon...more
DI Stephen Villani is head of homicide in Melbourne. He's called to a new up market apartment building where the naked body of a young woman who looks a lot like his daughter is found dead in a bathtub. There are a lot of powerful people with apartments in this building and there is a great deal of political pressure to have the death declared accidental.

TRUTH is the follow-up to Peter Temple's award winning THE BROKEN SHORE.

Reading a Peter Temple novel is a commitment. You have to concentrate....more
Stephen O'Sullivan
The issue with genre fiction, whether sci-fi, which I am far more familiar with, or in this case detective fiction, is that these styles are best compared with one another. This is mostly because literary novels are, by definition, to be judged purely on the language and writing and characterisation. Genre fiction can also rest on a secondary purpose, whether mystery or technology or romance or whatever. In this way, genre fiction often relies on its own language, a language that is immediately...more
I read this about a year ago and I still think about it. Structured as a classic police procedural, it moves quickly to narrate the inner life of the protaganist, Victoria's newly promoted chief Homicide Detective, a second-generation Italisn. He gets pulled into the broader and nastier political machinations of the Victorian government, undertanding that the whole edifice is corrupt, and he is a part of it.

This story is et in the context of Victoria's dreadfully destructive bushfires, where th...more
Ed O'farrell
Peter Temple writes a better book than most folks in the genre. Why he is so little known in America is beyond me. His writing style is a blend of Robert B. Parker and John D. MacDonald. This is a great book. The characters are fully developed, the plot solid and the dialog the best I've read.
Inspector Stephen Villani is the head of Melbourne, Australia homicide. He is confronted with complex and bloody murders in this mystery cum police procedural.
The book features a cadre of Temple's signature...more
I really enjoyed this book and can see why it won the Miles Franklin award. I didn't mind The Broken Shore but I thought this was a much better book. The staccato style was still there but the writing seemed to flow more. I loved the main character,Villani. He was essentially a good man but he wasn't perfect. His character was very realistic and, although at times his decisions were hard to take, he was an appealing character. At times he gave himself a very hard time. The story was gripping and...more
Christine Bongers
For those whose tastes run to the literary, the crime novel to die for is Peter Temple’s 'Truth'. Exposing the fictional underbelly of the Victorian police force with a wit is as dry as the crackle of eucalypt leaves in the moment before the fireball hits.

A stripped-down, elegant and elliptical story of hard men and violence on both sides of the law, where Truth is a lovely little grey who “won at her second start, won three from twelve, always game, never gave up. She sickened and died in hours...more
I found out about this because it won an award. A literary award, not a crime award. Reading it, I could see why. The prose is stunning. The clipped sentences and punchy dialog convey clausterphobia, helplessness, and grime without the need of descriptive passages. Sentence for sentence, a real joy to read.

Overall, though, I couldn't keep track of the characters. My reaction to the big reveal was, "Who?" Maybe it was the Australian slang that I didn't understand, but I feel like I only got two-t...more
Jim Thornton
I can recommend this book if a) You are an Australian, b) If you are an Australian, c) If you are Australian. Otherwise give it a miss. Full of incomprehensible Aussie slang, unexplained locations, bizarre dialogue and odd ploy this is probably getting my 'Crap book of the year' award. Serves me right for buying it at an airport.
What a superb story. I just read this at almost one sitting. This is a big beast of a book; not just a great crime story but a great story full stop. This book bears comparison with James Ellroy in the quality of the writing but also in it's examination of law and disorder. The dialogue is stunning; it crackles and sparks like the fires that are the backdrop to the story.The humour is cynical and often very very black, but it sounds authentically the dark humour of men whose daily task it is to...more
Wow, those Australians really talk funny! Though I've read many books by Australian authors, I found the slang pretty hard to understand and that did make a (negative) impact on my reading pleasure, I must admit. Still, this is a very good and engrossing book, first I've ever read by Temple. A girl is found dead, maybe accident, maybe murder, in a very classy building. The book is a lot about politics and power - who has it, who loses it, who doesn't have it (including immigrants, prostitutes, t...more
I read this in 24 hours. In that time I ate, slept, showered, attended an Indonesian class, led a peer group - but most of my time was spent reading this amazing book. I can't believe that I've only just discovered it, five years after its publication and four years after it won the Miles Franklin and the Premier's Literary Award. What have I been doing?

I am not at all surprised that a 'genre' - crime - book can also be an example of serious literature; authors like P. D. James have been writing...more
A young girl is found naked and dead in one of Melbourne's newest, most secure residential buildings on top of a casino. The players are powerful, and nobody's talking. Three bodies are found tortured to death in a house in Oakleigh, there are no breaks in the case, or the the stifling Melbourne bushfire summer. For the head of homicide, it's a matter of keeping on.

The story:
Steve Villani lives in the shadow of the men who have gone before him. His father, Bob, remains stubbornly on his property...more
Banafsheh Serov
There's an energy and tempo about this book that makes it a gritty, powerful read. Economical, Temple does not mince his words, keeping the sentences diamond sharp and raw.

Humming with tension, Truth is an atmospheric, oppressive and at times uncomfortable novel. Curiously, I was reading this whilst on a visit to Melbourne where the book is set. The Melbourne I walked seemed far removed from the criminal underbelly detective Chief Homicide Inspector Villani lives and works in.

A good man in a ha...more
I was intending to give this novel 4 stars in spite of the fact that it is a more difficult read than my other current book which is about cosmology, dark energy being less obscure than Peter Temple's ultra-succinct prose.

I think the unremittingly unique syntax, which often dispenses with verbs and articles, might be a way of conveying the limited inner world of the main character - though as far as I can recall almost all the characters were similarly terse. It's certainly a device that enhanc...more
David Brewster
Took a little while to get into this: it is dialogue driven and the dialogue is very choppy. Not many prepositions or conjunctions in either conversation or description. But once you get used to that style, this evolves into a real cracker of a story. Villani is well drawn, though we still don't know if we really know him by the end. I don't think I would like him much, but I did come to admire him. The classic flawed hero.

The story is very current. Lots of oblique and not-so-oblique references...more
Set in Melbourne, Australia it took me a while to get used to Peter Temple's short sharp sentences where not one word is wasted in this compelling and taut thriller.

As the new Head of Homicide, Steve Villani doesn't trust anyone to do the job properly, he has to know everything, the previous Head (Singo) believed that :

Homicide ate you........Singo told them not to obsess but he judged them by how much they obsessed, how little time they spent at home. No one survived who didn't pass the HCF tes
This book invoked a lot of memories for me as I was raised in the inner bay-side suburbs of Melbourne and am very familiar with the setting and some of the elderly stereotypes. Characters like Rose bought the local Melbourne Herald from me when I was a paper-boy. Their view of the world left lasting impressions.

Rose was on her verandah, pink tracksuit. "Stickyin..."
Villani says "Going all right?"
Rose says "All right's history, mate. Back's gone. Had this massage, the cow touched somethin, musta...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Peter Temple is an Australian crime fiction writer.

Formerly a journalist and journalism lecturer, Temple turned to fiction writing in the 1990s. His Jack Irish novels (Bad Debts, Black Tide, Dead Point, and White Dog) are set in Melbourne, Australia, and feature an unusual...more
More about Peter Temple...
The Broken Shore Bad Debts (Jack Irish, #1) Black Tide (Jack Irish #2) Dead Point (Jack Irish #3) White Dog (Jack Irish #4)

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“Man near entrance is shot in the head at close range from behind. The other two, multiple stab wounds, genitals severed, other injuries. Also head and pubic hair ignited, shot, muzzle in mouth. Three bullets recovered, 45 calibre."
Villani: “So you can’t rule out an accident?”
More quotes…