2015: Dear Daughter

Dear Daughter, Elizabeth Little

This was pretty good mystery fun - a story of a Paris Hiltonesque socialite named Janie who was accused (and convicted!) of murdering her mother.  As the book opens she has been released from prison because her conviction has been overturned due to a screw up in the DNA lab, but the general consensus is that she did it - and she's being hounded by the press, trying to live in obscurity.  And a nasty true crime blog has put a bounty on her head - whoever can find her gets a $10,000 prize.  Jane is angry, prickly, sarcastic, mean - but she's also innocent.  So she decides to try to solver her mother's murder herself.  They may not have loved each other, but she figures she owes her that.

It's a pretty good set up, and the writing is nice and snappy - Little cleverly uses snippets of things like blog posts, emails, wikipedia entries at the start of each chapter, and does so well - it's nice to read a book by an author who actually has a working understanding of the internet.  And Janie seems realistically angry without being totally unlikeable or unrealistic.  The setting is great, too - the (SPOILER) small town they end up in rings very true.  If I were to quibble, it would be with the ending, which was little too gotcha for me (and a bit of a downer, though probably realistic - or as realistic as a thriller who dunnit mystery novel can really be).  But it was a total page turner, and I would recommend it to people who like mystery novels.  Especially if you are looking for something to breeze through.  Beach season is over, alas, but this would be a keen beach read.

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017