By: Tana French
Rating: 2.5 stars
Who Should Read This: Readers who are into mystery and suspense books.
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
As dusk approaches a
small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their
children home. But on this warm evening, three children do not return
from the dark and silent woods. When the police arrive, they find only
one of the children gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing
blood-filled sneakers, and unable to recall a single detail of the
Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a
detective on the Dublin Murder Squad and keeps his past a secret. But
when a twelve-year-old girl is found murdered in the same woods, he and
Detective Cassie Maddox—his partner and closest friend—find themselves
investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved
mystery. Now, with only snippets of long-buried memories to guide him,
Ryan has the chance to uncover both the mystery of the case before him
and that of his own shadowy past.
I really wanted to like this book. I am big into thrillers and find usually that any mystery that brings up the past with it is always a nail biting, on the edge of your seat book. I actually have also been wanting to read this for awhile and when I found it one day at a used bookstore in Dupont I was extremely excited. There is a good chance I got my hopes to high for this one. It started out good. I liked the dynamic between Rob and Cassie as partners. They knew the ins and outs of each other, and they reminded me slightly of me and my guy friend how they were able to tell the mood the other was in by the look on their face.
The story started out good and dramatic. Child found in an archaeological dig on the edge of the woods where Rob was found when he was twelve, without his two friends, who were never found. Plenty of suspects and the author went back and forth from what little memories Rob had from the day he lost his two friends. As the story went on though I wanted to cut out huge chunks of the book that I felt was being reiterated too many times. I just felt that it dragged on and the author could have made it a tad more concise to keep the readers attention and the suspense raised. Furthermore, I found the ending extremely depressing. I know that this doesn't make a book good or bad, there are plenty of books with a depressing ending that I have loved. It just seemed to me that not only was it very sad, I also felt that lose ends weren't tied up as well as I thought they should have been.
Before I steer all readers away from this book I want to point out that their was good character development. The reader really gets to know the characters and I found myself sometimes with the sense that I was one of the group and wanted to join the nightly dinners the detectives had to discuss the case. Furthermore, I was really surprised by the ending. No matter how much it depressed me, I can definitely say I wasn't expecting it. I would love to hear others' thoughts on the book as well! I am wondering what I missed that others seemed to enjoy so much! Let me hear your thoughts!