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The Wrong Kind of Blood

(Ed Loy #1)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  814 ratings  ·  91 reviews
After twenty years in Los Angeles, Ed Loy has come home to bury his mother. But hers is only the first dead body he encounters after crossing an ocean.

The city Loy once knew is an unrecognizable place, filled with gangsters, seducers, hucksters, and crazies, each with a scheme and an angle. But he can't refuse the sexy former schoolmate who asks him to find her missing hus
Paperback, 352 pages
Published February 27th 2007 by Harper (first published January 1st 2006)
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Average rating 3.67  · 
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 ·  814 ratings  ·  91 reviews

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Aug 18, 2018 added it
A dnf for me. Nothing much happens in the first 100 pages and I cared neither for the MC or any of the other characters. A man returns from LA to his home country (Ireland) to attend his mother's funeral. There he gets involved in the lives/problems/possible criminal activities of some of his old friends. But ...

It's one of those he goes there; he goes here; he talks to her and him and him and then - there's a body! Wait, another body! And his old pal is a policeman. (Of course he is.) Another p
Jul 31, 2012 rated it liked it
I can’t remember now where I heard about Declan Hughes, but he is the real McCoy…an Irish writer with a depth of knowledge about human decency and failure, crime and motivations. His canvas is local—there is a known-ya-a-long-time intimacy to Irish novels that are quite unlike anything coming out of America, and families pass on curses and debts and deep knowledge of their community. Before turning to crime novels, Hughes was a theatre director and playwright, so he has the goods (knowledge of h ...more
Nov 09, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Wanda's next!
Recommended to Hayes by: Bettie
3+ stars

Very enjoyable, well-written mystery. Only real flaw was a "what!?!" moment in the middle: highly improbable, but easily forgiven... I wanted to find out what was going to happen. (view spoiler) Solution to it all also improbable, but fun in an odd sort of way.

Wanda's next!
Jul 03, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010
I really enjoyed The City of Lost Girls which is the 5th in this series so I thought I'd go back and read the others.

So far this has been a disappointing experiment. Maybe this book suffers in comparison to the later one and it probably isn't helping things that I read it after finishing The Whisperers by John Connolly which I absolutely adored, but the fact is that finishing this was a struggle.

Mr. Hughes writes and plots well, but overall the book is sort of gray and cold and more drab than gr
May 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
A solid private eye story. Nothing revolutionary, but well-plotted with good characters and a strong sense of atmosphere.

My only issue was the half dozen times that the author chose to flash-forward or back. It felt like a device that added little to the story, but rather took away some of the surprise and discovery that the story would have if it was told linearly. A very small gripe.

I would definitely read the next in the series. A very confident and strong addition to the private eye genre.
Robert Intriago
Jan 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: p-i
Pretty good book, not a classic crime noir, but close to it. Takes place in Dublin and the protagonist is an Irishman living in Los Angeles that returns home for mother's funeral. It has lots of action, dead bodies and family ties. Parts of it are a little verbose and in sections it drags, but maybe it has to do with it being the author's first book and he is trying to set backgrounds for his next book (there are two) There is also a lot of characters and they are in some places hard to keep tra ...more
Jun 30, 2011 rated it liked it
I really like the way the author paints a picture of contemporary Ireland throughout his books. This is the second one I've read. I didn't give the book more than three stars because the mystery wasn't that interesting to me. I did like the main character who is a private detective with a penchant for getting in trouble. (Sound familiar?) Good writing and an easy read. ...more
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019-reads
RATING: 3.25
WHY: PI Ed Loy has been living in LA for a long time when he returns to Ireland after the death of his mother. He has every intention of returning to the US upon settling his mother’s affairs. He’s the proverbial stranger in a known land. There are many things that he is very familiar with and as many others that are completely unknown to him. Although not officially a PI, he acts as one when he looks for the missing husband of a friend,
Mar 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Hardboiled noir-style crime fiction set in modern day Dublin. The book features a semi-Superman type PI, he can be knocked over, but only for a minute due to his amazing combative skills and recuperative powers. The book has a complex and sometimes confusing plot, a fair amount of drinking and sex, a pile of dead bodies and a few situations requiring suspension-of-disbelief. Just an OK read for me, I’m more a fan of the Adrian McKinty and Ken Bruen books for my Irish crime fix.
Mary Overton
Marvelous gothic crime thriller ... the burned out PI returns to his home in Ireland when his mother dies, & he reconnects after 20 years with "buddies" from the old neighborhood ... those who have become successful and those who have failed, those who are crooked and those who are straight. Gothic themes of crumbled fortunes, love secrets & betrayals, missing fathers, traded identities, and twinning are explored as mystery after mystery is uncovered. A major theme is blood: blood types and the ...more
Mar 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best line in the book: "I know, Jaysus, the state of the place, like drinking in an f*ing hairdresser's." This is a mystery novel that is worth reading twice. Complex plot, multi-layered symbolism, lots of great characters (especially Tommy) and interesting twists. I'd like to see if the clues were present on a second read. Of course Ed Loy jumps into bed with women far too quickly. But what good P.I. isn't screwed up somehow? ...more
Steph (loves water)
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: irish-garda, 2017
Pretty good debut by Declan Hughes. I really enjoyed how he developed Ed Loy and unraveled the secrets of his own and two other families reaching back into the past 70 years. Really good read about Ireland, I put Mr. Hughes and Mr. McGinty as the experts in Irish thrillers. Check them out, Neville Stuart, you might learn something.
Kelley Willis
Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Strong Lead Character, Good Plot, Well-Described

A great setting in Ireland, suitably varied yet monochromatic. Excellent descriptions, of place, people and the character’s inner monologue love, sex, violence, money, drugs, infidelity, both high and low. Great first for this character. Looking forward to the rest.
Mike Bechtel
Feb 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: in-library
An excellent thriller which had you guessing until the end. Even though Ed Loy manages to solve the case (and in the process close the book on a couple of other long standing mysteries) political interests intercede resulting in there being very little justice. A very enjoyable read that I would highly recommend.
Mar 24, 2021 rated it liked it
Very noir, which is sometimes fun and sometimes annoying with the casual misogyny. There are also pointless comments about 'Oriental' expressions. Overall, entertaining and the audiobook has a great reader. It does make you wonder why there aren't more books that keep the fun stuff and don't surprise you with unnecessary discrimination/bullshit. ...more
Feb 20, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2021-mt-bookpile
Dublin. A place Ed Loy though he'd escaped. But now, thanks to his mother's death, he's back to do the burial and estate stuff. And, of course, get drawn into the mystery of his old crush's missing husband. Followed by other former mates and acquaintances and family friends coming around, asking for help or offering advice or needing to be asked about the disappearance and other events.

Ed's profession as a private detective in LA stands him in good stead, even though the Guards are a bit skepti
Apr 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Very enjoyable PI tale set in modern Dublin. I've read many books in a similar vein authored by folks much older than me. Nice to read someone in the genre who is from my generation and has similar cultural references. I picked up the entire Ed Loy series and will be reading them all. ...more
Dec 08, 2016 rated it it was ok
On old school bad boy detective with an Irish twist. I found it rambling , predictable and generally just nothing special. To much cliché
Jul 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Noir Irish mystery crime thriller - yes!
Nov 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
I like Ed Loy's voice so much so I can look past some of the convenient plot twists. Great Irish noir. ...more
May 20, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A mystery fun to read with a little background on the Irish language.
Karen Baadsgaard
Aug 25, 2018 rated it did not like it
BAD- DIDN'T READ ...more
Oct 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I don’t know how I found this book, but I am sure happy I did.
Excellent murder mystery.
And I am even happier to know there are 4 more in the series.
I liked the style of writing but not the story. It wasn't compelling enough. ...more
The mystery became so muddled with intertwining, overlapping, past and present characters and crimes that about 3/4 of the way in I realized I didn’t know WHAT main character Ed Loy was investigating. Good details about an economically resurgent Dublin that we don’t usually see but it wasn’t enough to save the book.
Glen Guldbeck
Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Fans of Michael Connelly should love this book. Bravo!!!
Apr 21, 2021 rated it it was ok
I can so tell the difference between the men and women who write mysteries/detective stories. Sex scenes are so predictable with men. Anyway, story was okay, I will probably read #2.
Patricia Dusenbury
Mar 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the first Ed Loy book and my introduction to Declan Hughes. I enjoyed reading - Mr. Hughes has a way with words, descriptions of places and emotions both. The plot was well-paced and satisfyingly twisted so that the ending was a surprise. The mass of coincidences and connections sometimes felt a bit much. Otherwise, I would have given it five stars.
Aug 08, 2011 rated it liked it


What is it about the Irish and crime fiction? For some reason, the gray, rain-swept isle seems to produce crime scribes a plenty, writers who pen plots that hit the gut hard as a shot of Jameson and create protagonists as world-weary as a priest after hearing a week's worth of confessions. Talents such as Tana French and Adrian McKinty have shaped this poignant, ferocious literary landscape. Now Declan Hughes makes his mark with The Wrong Kind of B
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Declan Hughes has worked for more than twenty years in the theater in Dublin as director and playwright. In 1984, he cofounded Rough Magic, Ireland's leading independent theater company. He has been writer in association with the Abbey Theatre and remains an artistic associate of Rough Magic. He lives in Dublin, Ireland.

* Ed Loy Mystery

Other books in the series

Ed Loy (5 books)
  • The Color of Blood (Ed Loy, #2)
  • The Price of Blood (Ed Loy, #3)
  • All the Dead Voices (Ed Loy, #4)
  • City of Lost Girls (Ed Loy, #5)

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