Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

What the Dead Know by Laura Lippman (Book Review)

Title: What the Dead Know
Author: Laura Lippman
Publisher: Harper Collins

First sentence: Her stomach clutched at the sight of the water tower hovering above the still, bare trees, a spaceship come to earth.

About the book: In 1975, two girls went missing, sisters - ages 11 and 15. They were never found nor were their bodies recovered. Now - it is 30 years later and a woman who was involved in a car accident is claiming to be Heather Bethany - the younger missing sister.

This is the beginning of a journey that shows us a family, that in the '70's was just beginning to show some cracks in it's foundation. Dave, the father, was basically married to his store - The Man with the Blue Guitar or tbg as it later came to be known. He was also very involved with a set of beliefs called the Agnihotra - part of the Fivefold Path. Miriam, the mom, a realtor who was having an affair with a co-worker. Sunny, the older Bethany sister just beginning to show some "teenage angst" and Heather, not quite 12, who just wanted to go to the mall with her big sister.

When the Bethany girls came up missing - it didn't take long for Dave and Miriam's marriage to disintegrate under the added stress.

I did not see the ending of this book coming and loved the last few twists! The ending was not AT ALL what I expected. This was my first Laura Lippman book and I really enjoyed the style of writing and the way the story was told. I look forward to reading more books by Ms. Lippman in the future.

About the author: Laura Lippman was a reporter for 20 years, including 12 years at The (Baltimore) Sun. She began writing novels while working full time and published seven books about "accidental PI" Tess Monaghan before leaving daily journalism in 2001. Her work has been awarded the Edgar, the Anthony, the Agatha, the Shamus, the Nero Wolfe, Gumshoe, and Barry awards. She also has been nominated for other prizes in the crime fiction field, including the Hammett and the Macavity. She was the first-ever recipient of the Mayor's Prize for Literary Excellence and the first genre writer recognized as Author of the Year by the Maryland Library Association.

Ms. Lippman grew up in Baltimore and attended city schools through ninth grade. After graduating from Wilde Lake High School in Columbia, Md., Ms. Lippman attended Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her other newspaper jobs included the Waco Tribune-Herald and the San Antonio Light.

Ms. Lippman returned to Baltimore in 1989 and has lived there since. (from author's website)

Has anyone out there read any Laura Lippman books? What is your favorite?

What the Dead Know
Publisher/Publication Date: Harper Collins, March 2007
ISBN: 9780061128851
384 pages

Barnes & Noble


Anonymous said...

Even just the title makes it sound like a tempting read!

bermudaonion said...

This sounds wonderful. I don't think I've read any of Lippman's books.

Anonymous said...

Amen to that! The ending blew my mind. Awesome writer - great review. :)

Dar said...

I've not read this book but I've always wanted to. Sounds really good by your review. I may have to pick it up one of these days. I was going to say the same as rhapsody that the title alone makes me want to pick it up.


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