Controlled Explosions (A Paula Maguire Short Story): A compelling crime novella of violence and intrigue by Claire McGowan

Controlled Explosions (A Paula Maguire Short Story): A compelling crime novella of violence and…

byClaire McGowan

Kobo ebook | July 1, 2015

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Paula Maguire, forensic psychologist on the Irish border, returns as a teenager in this exclusive digital short story from Claire McGowan. If you love the Paula Maguire series, or are yet to meet the infamous psychologist, you'll be gripped...

1998 and future forensic psychologist Paula Maguire is still in school, being taunted by bullies. In particular one girl, whose family has paramilitary links, is calling her a rat. Even though Paula might not know why her mother went missing five years before, she's sure she's no traitor's daughter.

But words are nothing compared to what her policeman father, PJ, is dealing with. The hot summer is simmering with violence and the entire force is focused on finding a bomber leaving devices on the routes of Orange parades.

When PJ is injured at the scene of a crime, Paula is shocked to find herself next in the perpetrator's crosshairs. The threats at school don't feel so empty now, but what connection could there be?

As the possibility of first love appears, will Paula be able to find out in time to save herself and follow her heart?

What readers are saying about Controlled Explosions:

'A beautifully rendered novella set way before the series began. I was completely hooked'

'Fast-paced and exciting'

'A great peek into the history of Paula - our favourite psychologist! All very fascinating - I just love the setting'

Title:Controlled Explosions (A Paula Maguire Short Story): A compelling crime novella of violence and…Format:Kobo ebookPublished:July 1, 2015Publisher:HeadlineLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1472228308

ISBN - 13:9781472228307


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Prequel novella to the Paula Maguire mystery series. A prequel novella, "Controlled explosions" introduces readers to Claire McGowan's Paula Maguire series. When I read that Ken Bruen proclaimed her to be ‘Ireland’s answer to Ruth Rendell, I knew I had to check this series out. Paula Maguire, the series protagonist is a forensic psychologist who was born in a border town in Northern Ireland. She is the daughter of a Catholic policeman in the Royal Ulster Constabulary, and a mother who was suspected to have been 'taken' by the IRA. In "Controlled explosions" we visit Paula when she is in her last year of school. Five years ago, her mother disappeared when Paula was just thirteen. She was rumoured to be a 'tout' (a word used to describe informers in Northern Ireland). Her father, busy with his high stress job, is of little aid to her when she is relentlessly bullied at school. She feels so alone - somehow apart from the other teenagers with their teenage pursuits. We learn of her first crush, and her aspirations for her future. She wants to attend university and get as far away as she can, thus escaping her little Irish border town. Set in 1998, the novella gives readers a glimpse of Paula's family life at the same time providing a snapshot of the senseless 'troubles' and how the Irish people were impacted by the years of strife. The "Good Friday Agreement" was just signed, and the Irish were wary of how this will further impact their country and their lives... I enjoyed the writing and plan to pursue the series. I must ascertain if Ken Bruen's comparison to Ruth Rendell stands true after all. I imagine that folks who have already read the series would like to go back and read of Paula Maguire as a teenage girl. If, like me, you haven't yet read the series, you will also enjoy this early glimpse into the life of the series' protagonist.
Date published: 2017-03-13