Saturday, October 2, 2010

Fragile

The Hollows is a small town approximately one hundred miles from New York City.  It's your typical small town where everyone knows each other and probably went to school together.  People feel safe here because they know who to befriend and who to avoid.  Maggie grew up there and moved back to start her own psychology practice.  Her husband, local cop Jones, grew up there, too.  They have a son, Ricky, who can be your average rebellious teen.  On the surface, this looks like any run-of-the-mill small town family.  But in Lisa Unger's newest book, Fragile, we soon find that secrets have a way of coming back to haunt you.

Ricky's girlfriend, Charlene, goes missing after a fight between her mother and stepfather.   Maggie quickly sees parallels between this case and another missing person case from the town's history.  Twenty years earlier, another teenage girl, Sarah, went missing.  There was an arrest after a local man confessed to the killing, but something never added up about the confession.  Maggie has a feeling that several people in town know more than they claim to know.  The problem is that she feels that her husband is in on whatever is going on.

Maggie also doesn't know what to make of one of her patients, local teen Marshall Crosby.  Marshall has had a difficult life having to live with his father, Travis, another lifer to The Hollows.  The Crosby's don't have the best reputation in town and many have tried to keep Marshall away from his father.  He has done well for himself, but decides to move back in with his father who has been released from prison.  Maggie quickly sees that Marshall's behavior is starting to resemble his father's.

I really enjoyed this new offering from Lisa Unger.  It provides great suspense with some terrific, but never overdone, twists along the way.  The finale ties all the loose ends up nicely.  I plan on picking up Unger's other works as this is a great mystery writer with a terrific writing style.

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