Last Day

Thomas & Mercer: Amazon. Feb. 2020. 412p. ISBN 9781542018203. $24.95. M
When Kate Woodward was 16, she and her younger sister, Beth, were tied to their mother in the basement of the family art gallery in Connecticut while thieves stole paintings. Their mother died, and Kate has tried to shelter Beth ever since. Kate fled her past by becoming a pilot, while Beth took over the gallery, married, and had a daughter. Now, 23 years later, Kate forces the police to break into Beth’s house, where they find her sister’s murdered body. Although Kate doesn’t remember him, Detective Conor Reid was the one who rescued them the first time. He has remained obsessed with the two women, and blames himself that he couldn’t save Beth. The tragedy brings back memories for both of them as they search through the secrets in Beth’s life that she kept hidden from her sister. Despite the atmospheric setting, and beautiful art in the story, there’s a bitterness and anger that pervades the book.
VERDICT Strong love overcomes pain in this latest from Rice (Pretend She’s Here), which combines suspense with stories of surviovors, sisterhood, best friends, and small communities shaken by violence or death.

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