• The Trespasser

  • A Novel
  • By: Tana French
  • Narrated by: Hilda Fay
  • Length: 20 hrs and 6 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (10,194 ratings)

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The Trespasser

By: Tana French
Narrated by: Hilda Fay
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Publisher's Summary

The best-selling novel by Tana French, author of the forthcoming novel The Searcher, is “required reading for anyone who appreciates tough, unflinching intelligence and ingenious plotting” (The New York Times). She “inspires cultic devotion in readers” (The New Yorker) and is “the most important crime novelist to emerge in the past 10 years” (Washington Post).

“Atmospheric and unputdownable.” (People)

In best-selling Tana French’s newest “tour de force” (The New York Times), being on the Murder Squad is nothing like Detective Antoinette Conway dreamed it would be. Her partner, Stephen Moran, is the only person who seems glad she's there. The rest of her working life is a stream of thankless cases, vicious pranks, and harassment. Antoinette is savagely tough, but she's getting close to the breaking point. 

Their new case looks like yet another by-the-numbers lovers' quarrel gone bad. Aislinn Murray is blond, pretty, groomed-to-a-shine, and dead in her catalog-perfect living room, next to a table set for a romantic dinner. There's nothing unusual about her - except that Antoinette's seen her somewhere before. 

And that her death won't stay in its neat by-the-numbers box. Other detectives are trying to push Antoinette and Steve into arresting Aislinn's boyfriend, fast. There's a shadowy figure at the end of Antoinette's road. Aislinn's friend is hinting that she knew Aislinn was in danger. And everything they find out about Aislinn takes her further from the glossy, passive doll she seemed to be. 

Antoinette knows the harassment has turned her paranoid, but she can't tell just how far gone she is. Is this case another step in the campaign to force her off the squad, or are there darker currents flowing beneath its polished surface? 

©2016 Tana French (P)2016 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"[Narrator] Hilda Fay gives a keenly considered performance.... Subtle distinctions among Irish accents play a fascinating part in Fay's performance." (AudioFile)

“A tour de force.... When you read Ms. French - and she has become required reading for anyone who appreciates tough, unflinching intelligence and ingenious plotting - make only one assumption: All of your initial assumptions are wrong.” (Janet Maslin, The New York Times)   

"Tana French is the most interesting, most important crime novelist to emerge in the past 10 years." (The Washington Post

"[Tana French] inspires cultic devotion in readers…most crime fiction is diverting; French's is consuming." (The New Yorker

Featured Article: Whodunit Whizzes—A Shortlist of the Best Mystery Authors


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What listeners say about The Trespasser

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A literary mystery

Despite its length, I was so pulled along by this story, I stopped watching the news, I stayed up hours past any sane bedtime, listened in my car, listened in the bathtub...just had to keep listening. Unlike some other reviewers, I found Hilda Fay to be one of the best narrators ever, and a perfect match for Tana French's writing. I could easily tell which character was speaking and thought she truly conveyed changes in the characters as the story moved along. She also did a terrific job of varying regional accents; most were Dublin (with shades of difference in class and district) and others were from elsewhere in the southern part of the country. Stephen's accent differed from Antoinette's, for example. There are very few authors whose books I will pre-order; Tana French, especially if Hilda Fay is narrator, will be one of those. This is a masterful novel with a mystery at its heart. But there are more revelations than just discoveries about the case. The drawing of the characters, the exquisite descriptions of scenes and emotions, none were done with the minimalist style that even a good crime novel or thriller can get away with. Tana French spared no effort and made every word count in this marvelous book.

94 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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I cannot listen to this narrator

I suffered through 8 hours 20 minutes before giving up on the narrator. I'm a Tana French fan and I have looked forward to The Trespasser. I'll buy a copy of the printed book and read it.

76 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Loved it!!!

Unlike other reviewers, I had no issue with Hilda Fay's narration. She did a great job and I thought the story was as good as Tana French's other wonderful novels! I think some people just want the last narrator they liked in a series and can't stand any variation. While I've been there before, I had no problems sinking deep into the story. Another solid addition to Ms. French's Dublin Murder Squad! I can say that because I just re-listened to the series before I purchased The Trespasser!

63 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Can't stand the narrator

I am so upset I love / own every single audio book from Tana French. But I cannot take this narrator. Severely disappointed I was looking forward to this so much. The narration is painfully slow and just plain bad.

48 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not her best

I will follow Tana French anywhere. I've absolutely loved every one of her books until this one, and I'll continue to read everything she writes. This is not her best. It takes a very long time to really get moving; we spend far too long in Antoinette's head, which is a very angry place. There's a fine line between getting inside a protagonist's skin and festering, and this felt like the latter. When the book does get moving, it mostly reverts to French's usual high standards, but generally, this plot is not as interesting or as compelling as her others.

I did not like the narration at all. Antoinette, as I said, is a very angry person, and much of the first half of the book is in what I can only describe as a snarly tone. The narrator doesn't pull any punches, and I found myself reluctant to turn the book on again, because it was so difficult to listen to. A narrator can be true to the text without making it hard on the listener; this is one of the exquisite skills of a great narrator.

The other aspect of the narration that I found difficult was the extremity of the accent. Again, it felt like an inexperienced narrator who went over the top in search of authenticity at the expense of listenability (is that a word?). I would have paid good money for some consonants, and to lose about 75 percent of the glottal stops. It was just painful.

The upshot of my review: there are very, very few mystery authors as good as Tana French, and if you've read everything else she's written, by all means go for it, but I would recommend reading rather than listening to this one. If you haven't read everything else she's written, do that first.

33 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Stunningly bad reader

The sound and timbre of this reader's voice set my teeth on edge--that's purely personal. What isn't personal is the reader's inability to distinguish one voice from another. The main character, Antoinette Conway, (who doesn't sound anything like she did in the previous book) has an accent that I'm guessing must derive from some non-Dublin, lower class pocket of Ireland, since she doesn't sound like anyone you'll hear on the street in Dublin. At one point, she informs the reader that she's the one person on the Murder Squad who doesn't sound Irish. Why, then, does every other character speak in the same accent and voice, with the same mushy enunciation?

Is the novel any good? You can trust all French's works to be highly competent at the very least, though her more recent books haven't risen to the level of "Faithful Place." This one gets off to a very slow start with more explanation than action. I trust it will improve, but I'll be reading it myself to find out.

30 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Fabulous performance fabulous story

Would you listen to The Trespasser again? Why?

I absolutely loved the narrator and I have returned many books because of not liking the performer, I am that fussy. She gets the way people talk and think, with all the right pauses and emphases. I had been waiting with great anticipation for this book to come out and was not disappointed. I had a long car trip alone so heard eight hours almost non stop. Ioved Tana French's skill with showing thinking process.

29 people found this helpful

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My favorite to date

Excellent story and narration. Even though the suspect wasn't a shocking surprise, the weaving of the tale is masterful & the characters run deep. Tana French is an automatic purchase now...and I'll seek out Hilda Fay in future. She was spectacular.

25 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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I liked the narrator just fine

Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad books are probably my favorite mystery series. Not as bleak as Adrian McKinty. Her protagonists are usually female, always smart, deep thinkers. Those are good qualities for any main character but especially for a mystery.

Antonette, the only female detective on the Murder Squad is described as an outsider from the start. While she continues to be an outsider throughout the story, her own take on that goes through some transformation. Antonette and her partner Steve are given the case of a young woman found dead in her home. The home is sterile & impersonal and the two immediately have problems figuring out who this woman was, and why someone would want to kill her.

I was surprised to see complaints about the narrator. I would buy a book by this narrator again. She handles the different voices (male/female) and accents (mostly class distinctions within Dublin) well. Although Antonette narrates, and therefore has the most 'lines', Ms Fay seems to have no problem embodying the many men in Antonette's world. Best of all she doesn't get in the way of the story unfolding.

My favorite Tana French book was Broken Harbor. This is almost as good. I'll be listening to this one again before the next Murder Squad mystery hits the shelves.

23 people found this helpful

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Disappointing narrator

How did the narrator detract from the book?

I have listened to all the Tana French audiobooks- most of them have wonderful narrators (I especially enjoyed Tim Gerard Reynolds's rendition of Faithful Place). Unfortunately, I have to agree with the other reviewers and say that this is by far the worst narrator yet. I am actually listening to the book at 1.25x speed to normalize her pacing a little. Currently I have about 8 hours left but I might switch over to the print edition soon, because I find the audio version so sluggish. Overall, quite disappointing, especially considering how much I was looking forward to this audiobook.

19 people found this helpful