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The White Road

(Charlie Parker #4)

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  7,150 ratings  ·  304 reviews
John Connolly thrilled readers with his bestselling novels, "Every Dead Thing, Dark Hollow," and "The Killing Kind." Now he delivers spellbinding suspense as Charlie Parker races to unravel a brutal crime committed in the Deep South. After years of suffering unfathomable pain and guilt over the murders of his wife and daughter, private detective Charlie Parker has finally ...more
Paperback, 502 pages
Published January 6th 2003 by Hodder & Stoughton Ltd (first published January 1st 2002)
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4.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,150 ratings  ·  304 reviews

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Aug 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, mystery
"To invite me into their lives was to admit failure and allow death its provenance, for I was the one who arrived when all hope was gone, offering nothing but the possibility of a resolution that would bring with it more grief and pain and a knowledge that perhaps would make ignorance appear like a blessing. The only consolation in all that would occur was that some small measure of justice might begin to accrue from my involvement, that lives might continue with some small degree of certainty r ...more
Dirk Grobbelaar

“You lead a charmed life, Parker, you know that?”

This is the fourth Charlie Parker book. At this stage the series isn’t showing any sign of running out of momentum or atmosphere.

Yes, the Charlie Parker novels are violent and macabre, but they’re also singularly lyrical. Connolly has a remarkable writing style.

In his eyes I could see the night shapes reflected so clearly that it was as if they were a part of him, the elements of a darker world that had somehow entered and colonized his soul.

I have to start this off with a word of caution. To truly enjoy this absolutely amazing series, you have to start at the beginning. Starting anywhere other than Book 1---All The Dead Things and reading each book in order---should be punishable by public flogging. Would you recommend watching the Star Wars Trilogy in reverse order? Didn’t think so. This series is thought out in the big picture and each book builds on and relates back to the ones that precede it. It would be a crime to read them o ...more
That honeycomb world John Connolly introduced us to in The Killing Kind is back - and the one thing you can rely on when the past decides to pay a visit to the present is that ghosts might be sad, or lonely, or forgotten; but they're also angry.

This book links closely to the last, though (as it should be) you can read each book as a standalone. There's enough here to clue you in to the last without spoilers, but this series is starting to build its own honeycomb foundation, and there's major eve
Apr 16, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I gotta say, I love these books. They are formulaic, follow the same basic plotline every time, and somehow elevate the main characters to almost omniscient status; I mean, how many times can Charlie be about to bite it and Louis comes out of the shadows & blows someone's head off? But they're still so great, either in spite of or because of it! The creepiest, worst characters get awesome comeuppances (I particularly love that in this one, (view spoiler) ...more
Feb 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This series has become so reliably excellent, I don't know if I should even bother praising the writing or the suspense or the character development, all of which were in fact excellent. I would say that out of all Charlie Parker books so far this one is the least easily read as a stand alone, since it follows the same antagonist as Killing Kind. One of my favorite things about this book was the fact that we finally get a background on Angel and Louis, my favorite homicidal couple. More supernat ...more
John Connolly continues his excellent mystery series. Literary but violent. Serious with some nice smart assery.

Charlie Parker is asked to help save an accused murderer from himself. Ties in with the rest in the series. I would recommend you definitely read this series in order or you will ruin some of the other books.

The audio narrator was truly brilliant in bringing the story to life!
aPriL does feral sometimes
'The White Road' is actually a sequel to the previous book in the Charlie Parker series, 'The Killing Kind'. These two are books 3 and 4 in the series, and they should be read in sequence, but the earlier books are also referenced in the story quite frequently as well. Given these circumstances, gentle reader, before reading 'The White Road', I must insist the the previous books be read, in order, before this one, beginning with Every Dead Thing. Ignoring my advice may cause a severe lack of enj ...more
Aug 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
2nd reading - Our investigator Parker is asked by an old friend, S.C. lawyer Elliot, to investigate his client, a black man accused of killing his white girlfriend. The girl's family has money, and would like nothing better than bypass the justice system and deal justice themselves. That begins the unfolding of decades of racism and the lies told to cover it up.

Connolly does his usual awesome job researching the history and geography of his novels, giving us white supremacists and the ancestors
Ms. Nikki
John Connolly does bad guys so good.

In the fourth book we get a better glimpse into Charlie's roll as he deals with the paranormal aspect of his visions and ghosts. This book picks up right where book 3 left off so I'd not wait too long in between or you'll most likely forget certain details.

I don't know what Charlie would do without his companions as Louis seems to always be at the right place at the right time. Although his partner was missing, dealing with issues of his own, Louis can defini
Jun 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one took me a while to read, though I did enjoy it. When Connolly wants to write 'creepy detective/thriller/mystery' he's about the best I know.

In this one former police officer, now PI, Charlie Parker, living in Maine with his pregnant girlfriend, gets a call from a friend in Charleston, S. Carolina. Said friend is a lawyer, determined to protect a young black man who's been accused of killing his (white, wealthy) girlfriend. With some reluctance Charlie goes south...

Now, I'd just finishe
May 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: series
THE WHITE ROAD is book #4 in John Connolly's "Charlie Parker" series. Personally, I feel that you get the most out of these books by reading them in order, as each builds off of the one's before it in terms of character growth/development, and understanding about the nature of Charlie's unique gifts. That being said, THE WHITE ROAD is the first one that I think *should* be read AFTER its predecessor, THE KILLING KIND; this is simply because some of the characters/situations introduced continue r ...more
Nov 13, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2009
One of the things I'm discovering about John Connolly's Charlie Parker private detective series is that his cases aren't confined to one book. The White Road is a follow-up to The Killing Kind and it deals with the aftermath of Reverend Faulkner's bloodbath. We're also reminded that The Traveling Man, the man who killed Parker's wife and daughter, is somehow connected to Faulkner. It definitely feels like something is slowly building up.

Although I didn't enjoy the mystery in this book as much as
Jun 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-2015
Fantastic!! I am absolutely mesmerised by John Connolly's writing style. Despite the subjects he writes about his writing is beautiful. He is definitely my current favourite thriller author and I would say I'll be hard pushed to find another series as spellbinding.

The White Road is a follow on from The Killing Kind. I personally need to read book series' in order anyway, but if you don't I would recommend these two be read in order. Looking forward starting the next one tonight!
Charlie Parker
Jun 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the forth installment, Connelley has to do a lot of backtracking to get the reader up-to-date on the story. Past histories, villains and how they relate bogged down the first part of the book. For the first time I was mixing up characters and story line. Still, Connelley's lyrical writing shines through.
Sep 24, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as good as the first 3 but perhaps may be due to being a direct sequel to The Killing Kind which I read a while ago.

Nevertheless, I will certainly try another book in the series
The finest Charlie Parker experience yet. Granted, it took a little bit for the story to develop and pick up but when it did, Connolly did NOT let up. Fantastic storytelling from start to finish.
Oct 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Little over half way in and I can say that I really do enjoy this series.
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, audiobook

3.5 Stars for Narration by Paul Birchard (I couldn't get used to the NYC accent for Parker. Otherwise, he was great.)
4 Stars for Story

One of the elements I really enjoy about Connolly's writing is the way he seems to get the essence of the area he uses in the story. I don't feel like he was quite on the mark with Charleston, SC but there were a few parts that really did feel like the Low Country area. The casual remark about Hurricane Hugo and a small exchange Parker had with a local
Mar 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: connolly-john
A 4++. Ye ole 9 on a better 10 point system. I'm held back from a five rating due to the mystic and spooky character of part of the story, though it seems that it is grounded somewhat in reality.

As is typical of Connolly's work, it is well written, well researched, and a good story that has the ending not expected.
Feb 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
While I found it to be an intensely interesting tale, I would not recommend that others who are unfamiliar with Connolly’s writing begin with this one.

First, this is the fourth installement of his Charlie Parker series, and “The White Road” is littered with several references to past occurrences that would have better served this reader had I read the previous works. (May I say, Connolly does an excellent job of ‘flushing out’ the back-story to keep the reader from being confused; but the storyl
During the course of the novel Parker has a number of visions of a sinister black Cadillac that appears to be waiting for a passenger. Is it waiting for him or another? In this fourth novel the supernatural elements of his journey seem to be coming more to the fore with ravens that may or may not be dark angels and a ghostly woman. Charlie's ability to commune with the dead features is still quite understated though he seems to have accepted his role and the nature of the world between life and ...more
Dec 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The author has hit his stride! I love how he continues to develop the characters, allowing them to grow and change as if they were real people (and there were no distracting mobster plotlines this time). It's interesting how Connolly tied some of their backstories into the present day event that Charlie was investigating. But that's the point of the books--everything is connected. Happily, we're getting a little more insight into Charlie's "gift" and the honeycomb world. Also, I find Connolly to ...more
This time NO spooky style story in Maine but Parker feels obliged to fly down south in order to help out a "friend" who is defending a coloured murder suspect of a white girl whose family is rather influencial. All cliches get their moment in the light and yet mr. Connelly manages to wordsmith a rather decent tale of woe and mystery to a satisfying conclusion. This tale is a somewhat sequel to "the killing kind", and while it is nice to have read that one first it is not really a problem if you ...more
Jan 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am loving this series. In this book Connolly expands on the characterisation of Charlie Parker, Angel, Louis and Rachel and we begin to understand them better. Rachel in fact has an amazing moment at the end of the book which shows she is a force to be reckoned with in her own right. I had to check quickly that there are still many more in the series for me to read. There are so I can sleep easy tonight!
Apr 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had an image I was hoping to post on my review of this book, but for the life of me I cannot figure out how to correctly format to make that happen. Goodreads should really come out with an easy paste it. If you'd like to see the picture, follow the link:

This is a very ambitious entry in the Charlie Parker series. It is concerned with more than the racism of the present day, but also the heyday of lynchings, which, disturbingly, were attended like fami
Nov 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
"It's the place where justice is made, where the living and the dead walk together". Author John Connolly's fourth Charlie "Bird" Parker suspense thriller, "The White Road", really does sizzle from first to last page. Nearly impossible to put down this story is relentless with suspense and intrigue. Keeping me up until the wee hours trapped inside the story the pages just flew by. At just over 500 pages, this riveting plot had me mesmerized inside "Bird's" creepy shadow world of killers and craz ...more
May 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Another great and intense Charlie Parker novel that sees characters spill over from the previous novel The Killing Kind.
I don’t like to give to much in the form of spoilers when reviewing Charlie Parker novels but, The White Road has one of the most disturbing scenes to date out of the 6 Charlie Parker novels I’ve read. I felt contaminated and filthy for having witnessed what took place in this vivid flashback sequence. I wanted to reach out to the victims and help them. Connolly can write such
MisterLiberry Head
Mister Liberryhead is no longer a young liberryhead. Maturity makes me impatient even with a fictional hero who charges off on a needless quest and leaves a pregnant wife alone. For Charlie Parker, it is the “white road” – “where justice is made, where the living and the dead walk together” (p229) that beckons more than domesticity. He loves his role as avenger more than his duties as a new husband and father. Even Charlie’s loyal back-watchers, Louis and Angel, are limping and laconic from thei ...more
Mar 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another installment in the Charlie Parker series and my love for these books just continues to grow. Charlie has been contacted by his old friend Elliot Norton and asked to come to South Carolina to help clear a young man of a murder charge. After he arrives, he helps to transport the young man to a safe house, but just as Charlie starts to investigate the young man is murdered. Parker knows there is more to this than meets the eye. His investigation will take him back into the past of two famil ...more
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John Connolly was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1968 and has, at various points in his life, worked as a journalist, a barman, a local government official, a waiter and a dogsbody at Harrods department store in London. He studied English in Trinity College, Dublin and journalism at Dublin City University, subsequently spending five years working as a freelance journalist for The Irish Times newspaper ...more

Other books in the series

Charlie Parker (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • Every Dead Thing (Charlie Parker, #1)
  • Dark Hollow (Charlie Parker, #2)
  • The Killing Kind (Charlie Parker, #3)
  • The Black Angel (Charlie Parker, #5)
  • The Unquiet (Charlie Parker, #6)
  • The Reapers (Charlie Parker, #7)
  • The Lovers (Charlie Parker, #8)
  • The Whisperers (Charlie Parker, #9)
  • The Burning Soul (Charlie Parker, #10)
  • The Wrath of Angels (Charlie Parker, #11)
“You still carrying an arsenal in the trunk of your car?”

“Why, you need something?”

“No, but if your car is hit by lightning I’ll know where my lawn went.”
“An interesting thing happened today,” she said, giving me just enough time to get the word “hi” out of my mouth. “I opened the front door and there was a man on my doorstep. A big man. A very big, very black man.”

“Rachel —”

“You said it would be discreet. His T–shirt had the words ‘Klan Killer’ written on the front.”

“I —”

“And do you know what he said?”

I waited.

“He handed me a note from Louis and told me he was lactose intolerant. That was it. Note. Lactose intolerant. Nothing else. He’s coming to the reading with me. It was all I could do to get him to change his T–shirt. The new one reads ‘Black Death.’ I’m going to tell people it’s a rap band. Do you think it’s a rap band?”

I figured it was probably his occupation, but I didn’t say that. Instead, I said the only thing I could think of to say.

“Maybe you’d better buy some soy milk.”

She hung up without saying good–bye.”
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