okiegal - , reviewed Somebody Else's Music (Gregor Demarkian, Bk 18) on
First, let me say I truly enjoyed this book. Not so much for the mystery but for the content... (suburban)High School with all its baggage of peer pressure, 'social activities' angst, bullying, reunions, ugly duckling to swan, etc. (Not to mention school admins.)
Haddam certainly had something to say this time. I found not one chuckle in this book so be prepared. You are even forewarned in her acknowledgements, "this is the longest book I've ever written,... and spent dinner discoursing nonstop on Why Americans Are Obsessional About High School."
You will know these people, you will know yourself, you will remember. They say you can never go back - it is true - but you can stay...
Haddam hasn't lost her touch, she keeps you turning the pages. From the book cover: A long time ago in the small town of Hollman, PA, Liz Toliver was too smart and too shy for her good. Today she's a popular author engaged to a rock star. She has everything, including nightmares and the dreadful summer night when she was 17. It was a practical joke, by six female classmates that ended with Liz in a coma, a yound man with his throat slit and unshakeable memories that she's never forgotten, or forgiven. Now, thirty years later, she come home to visit old haunts, and play catch-up with old friends. Gregor Demarkian, retired chief of the FBI's Behavior Sciences Unit has his own questions about what really happened that night, but no one was prepared for the answers or the final outcome.
I was somewhat irritated by Gregor's (and Haddam's) attitude towards the characters.
About small towns ". . .it was almost as if they didn't believe all the things they saw and read, as if they thought. . .that in reality everyone on the planet lived the way they did. Or ought to" This is ironic as Gregor and Liz both make a point of lettiing us know how much Haddam disagrees with them living different than she does.
This kind of snottiness is prevalent in all of Haddam's novels.