Daily Archives: May 14, 2011

I’d Know You Anywhere – Book Review

Whatever he wanted know – and she had known from the first letter that he would not be satisfied with a one-sided contact, that his very words “I’d know you anywhere” were meant to remind her of a marker on a very old debt – she wanted something from him, too. She needed to ask: “Why me?” Was that wrong? Was it ego-driven, irrational? Did the very question desecrate the memories of the others, and if that was the case – then so what? Wasn’t she entitled to ask that question, in private, of the one person who actually could tell her if there was a reason she was alive? – from I’d Know You Anywhere, page 156 –

Eliza Benedict has married a wonderful man, birthed two adorable children, and has found some peace and satisfaction as a homemaker and mother. The last thing she expects is a letter from a man who more than twenty years earlier kidnapped and raped her…and now sits on death row for the murders of at least two girls. Walter, a narcissistic sociopath, sees Eliza as his last chance to escape the death penalty, and he is still the master manipulator who controlled her as a fifteen year old, frightened girl. So, when Eliza agrees to talk with him in order to keep her past a continued secret from her children, it is with some trepidation. Despite the passage of years, Eliza is still haunted by the girls who did not survive Walter’s evil intent, and wonders why she managed to do so.  I’d Know You Anywhere is a psychological thriller that asks two questions:  How reliable are our memories, and can we move forward without confronting our past?

Laura Lippman combines the perceptiveness of literary fiction and the cleverness of the suspense-thriller genre to craft a novel which is insightful while creating a sense of apprehension and foreboding. The novel is narrated in multiple viewpoints, allowing the reader to get a deeper sense of the characters and reveal the story within the story. Although, on its face, I’d Know You Anyway appears as a straight forward crime novel, what sets it apart from other books in its genre is the care Lippman takes in developing her characters.

I’d Know You Anywhere is not a fast-paced, edge-of-your-seat thriller…instead the plot is more evenly paced, allowing for an exploration of the crime itself (in flashbacks), as well as a look into the psyches of the victim and her attacker.

Thematically, the novel takes a look at memory, victim recovery (from both Eliza’s point of view, and the perspective of the survivors of Walter’s other, less fortunate victims), and psychological manipulation. Lippman also examines the nature of obsession through one character, a woman, who finds herself enthralled with the incarcerated Walter. As with all of Lippman’s novels, the role of media comes into play as the plot unfolds.

I enjoyed this book, as I have enjoyed previous work by this author. A relatively fast read, this is a book which will appeal to readers who enjoy both literary fiction and suspense fiction.

Recommended.

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Overall Rating:

Want a chance to win this book, OR The Girl In the Green Raincoat (also written by Laura Lippman)? Visit THIS post no later than May 22nd by 5:00 pm (PST)

THREE Book Laura Lippman Giveaway

I’d Know You Anywhere AND The Girl In The Green Raincoat, by Laura Lippman

Contest open from May 14 – May 22, 2011 (at 5:00 pm PST)

Thanks to the generosity of Authors On The Web and publisher William Morrow, I am pleased to be able to offer U.S. and Canadian readers of my blog the chance to win books by Laura Lippman.

THE BOOKS:

I’d Know You Anywhere (on sale May 3rd in trade paperback) is a stand-alone novel that explores the lasting effects of lives touched by crime (read my review).

An edgy, utterly gripping tale of psychological manipulation that will leave readers racing to the final page, I’d Know You Anywhere is a virtuoso performance from acclaimed, award-winning author Laura Lippman that is sure to be her biggest hit yet.

The San Diego Union-Tribune writes about this book: “[…]an exceptional novel in every way, which is sure to gain her many new followers.” And USA Today found the book “disarming and fascinating.

Watch this video where Laura Lippman speaks about I’d Know You Anywhere:

Read more about this book on the William Morrow website.

I’d Know You Anywhere is a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award (mystery category) and for the 2011 Edgar Award in the Best Novel category. The book was also nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Awardand has been included on numerous “Best of 2010” lists, including Stephen King’s list in Entertainment Weekly.

The Girl In The Green Raincoat was originally serialized in the New York Times, The Girl in the Green Raincoat but i s now in book form. It is a masterful thriller in the Alfred Hitchcock mode that places a very pregnant, homebound Tess Monaghan in the center of a murderous puzzle that could cost her her life and the life of her unborn child.

Learn more about the book here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Since the publication of her first novel, Baltimore Blues, in 1997, Laura Lippman has won virtually every major award given to U.S. crime writers, including the Edgar Award, Anthony Award, Agatha Award, Nero Wolfe Award, Shamus Award, and the Quill Award. What the Dead Know, published in 2007, was a New York Times bestseller and was chosen as one of the best books of the year by critics at the New York Times, Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, People magazine, Village Voice, and the South Florida Sun-Sentinel (read my review).

A former Baltimore Sun reporter, Lippman lives in that city. Learn more about Lippman and her work by visiting her author page on Harper Collins/William Morrow or by visiting the author’s website. Follow the author by “liking” her on Facebook.

BOOK GIVEAWAY DETAILS:

  • There will be THREE winners in this book giveaway: two people will win a copy of I’d Know You Anyway, and one person will win a copy of The Girl In the Green Raincoat.
  • Only those with either a U.S. or Canada mailing address are eligible to enter.
  • To enter, leave a comment on this post before 5:00 pm PST on May 22, 2011. Tell me which of the two books you are most interested in reading.
  • I will randomly select three winners sometime on the evening of May 22nd or the morning of May 23rd. and post them on my blog. I will also email the winners who must respond to that email with their snail mail address.