MYSTERY

Pretty As a Picture

Viking. Feb. 2020. 352p. ISBN 9780670016396. $27. M
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Film editor and cinephile Marissa accepts a job working with a legendary director and quickly discovers it’s no ordinary gig. Whisked away to the film shoot on a remote island, she’s not allowed to read the script, her phone is confiscated, and no one will tell her why the previous editor was fired. The film is based on an unsolved murder that occurred decades earlier on the island, and strange incidents on set seem to hint that the murderer may be interfering with the shoot. When Marissa finds herself in the middle of a new murder investigation, she uses her observational skills to put together the pieces of both crimes.
VERDICT Little (Dear Daughter) once again delivers a dark, witty thriller. Movie fans will be delighted with the behind-the-scenes setting and the numerous cinematic references. While there are some twists, this character-driven whodunit is mainly propelled by Marissa, an intelligent, charming protagonist whose neurodiversity is well portrayed. Recommended for mystery fans drawn to amateur sleuths and quirky, realistic protagonists.

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