Saturday, September 04, 2010
Laura Lippman. If she's not on your must-read list, put her on it. Now.
The first books are the Tess Monaghan series, which is good. Then there are the stand-alones, which I think will be considered classics.
The latest is I'D KNOW YOU ANYWHERE. I just finished reading it and I'm in awe.
I've yammered for years about Ken Follet and THE KEY TO REBECCA and THE EYE OF NEEDLE. What knocked my sox off with those books is how Follet changes how we feel about characters so deftly we only realize it later. The character we think is the hero in KEY TO REBECCA, the first character we see, isn't. Only later, much later, do we realize that.
What Laura Lippman does is more nuanced: she makes us wonder about the characters. We think Eliza is one thing, then we start wondering if maybe she's something else. Walter is the bad guy... right? This sense of wanting to find out about the characters kept me turning pages. And because Laura Lippman is a brilliant writer I not only found out, I was surprised by the ending and not disappointed at what I found out.
I think this book should be required reading for every writer.