The Likeness, by Tana French

So after I finished In the Woods, I had a dilemma. Should I just read Faithful Place, French’s new book about a character introduced in her second book, since the books are definitely standalone? Or should I go read those 450 pages of The Likeness again? Obviously, I chose the latter, mainly because I get twitchy about reading things out of order and also because in discussion with my friend Cari I had realized that I could barely remember a thing about this book, the one that I loved so much more than In the Woods.

So I sat down and read this book, but it was not nearly as good the second time around as In the Woods was, nor was it as good as I remember it being in the first place. The premise is spectacular: Cassie Maddox gets called in to help in a murder investigation because the dead girl not only looks startlingly like Cassie but is also carrying around ID that says she’s Lexie Madison, a person that Cassie and her boss made up when she was in Undercover. Creepy, right? Said boss, Frank Mackey, has sort of commandeered the investigation because he has decided that it would be awesome to see if Cassie could go undercover as the dead girl into the house where she lived with her four nearest, dearest, and possibly only friends.

It’s an interesting thought experiment, but I think the main interest I had in this book came from wondering if and when Cassie was going to get caught. Knowing what eventually happens really takes the suspense out of it, and I was just sort of like, “Okay, whatevs.” In the Woods had a cleverly psychotic killer, but (spoiler alert?) this one doesn’t, so there isn’t that same awe at watching the investigation unfold. But I’m still amazed how realistically Cassie embeds herself into the house, and I do love how the house itself is an important character in the story, so I will maintain my love for this book. Just maybe I won’t read it again.

Rating: 9/10 (was a 10… sigh…)
(Flashback Challenge, Support Your Local Library Challenge, Chunkster Challenge)

See also:
Reading Matters
reading is my superpower

Pass me yours, if you’ve got ’em.

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