Thursday, June 4, 2009
What the Dead Know
The plot of Laura Lippman's novel, What the Dead Know, is a good one. When a woman is arrested for a hit-and-run accident, she identifies herself as Heather Bethany. But Heather and her sister Sunny disappeared 30 years ago from a shopping mall. When questioned further, "Heather" refuses to provide any more information on what happened to her or where she has been. Detective Kevin Infante, assigned to investigate the woman, is skeptical of her claim that she is the missing girl. The little information Heather provides Infante leads to nothing but dead ends. With the help of the retired cop who originally worked the case, and Heather and Sunny's mother Miriam, Infante slowly begins to put the pieces of the puzzle together. This is certainly an edge-of-your-seat story. I listened to the audiobook version, so I didn't have the ability to peak at the ending, which I would have done if I had the print version. I could not wait to find out who this mysterious woman was, where she had been, and why she had never come forward. I was disappointed with the level of character development though. Lippman does a good job with the girls' parents, but none of the other characters really stand out. The narrative also moves back and forth in time, which was a bit confusing. When Heather finally reveals what happened to her, the story is a little far-fetched, but overall this is a gripping story.