Review: Live to Tell by Wendy Corsi Staub

23 Oct

Live to Tell My rating: 4 of 5 stars

In the end, I really enjoyed Live to Tell, but I had some issues with it that made me doubt that was how it would be in the end.

Summary via the author’s website:

Secrets can scandalize …

In a lovely suburban town just north of New York City, the gossip mill runs more efficiently than the commuter train line. And in every impeccably decorated house, they’re talking about Lauren Walsh. They say that nothing could be worse than being abandoned by your husband for another woman. They’re wrong …

Secrets can shock …

All Lauren wants is to protect her children from the pain of her messy divorce. But when their father goes missing, a case of mistaken identity puts all their lives in danger, and a stealthy predator lurks in the shadows, watching…waiting…

Secrets can kill …

Lauren is about to uncover an unfathomable truth—a truth this cold-blooded mastermind would never let her live to tell…

I really liked the complexity of the story. There were a lot of different storylines, and they did indeed tie together in the end, although I wasn’t always sure that would happen. It was fun to see the characters struggling with their piece of the puzzle, whether or not they knew that there was a puzzle at hand.

The down side of this was with so much going on, most of the characters didn’t get a lot of character development. There were a lot of characters, and many of them were quite interesting. You’d never know when a seemingly throwaway character would pop up again.

Several characters did get deeper coverage. Of these, I really enjoyed Lauren Walsh. Her attempts (not always successful) to pull together her life so she could be a better parent to her kids rang true to me, and created an interesting backdrop to the drama she happened into.

Nick, her ex-husband, wasn’t quite as interesting to me, but I did appreciate seeing his view of the events in his life. I was amused as he made the connection between his actions and those that his mother had taken many years ago, but he never generalized the effects her actions had on him to those that his actions had on his children.

On the other hand, I had some issues with the portrayal of 4 year old Sadie. Obviously, to describe events from the viewpoint of a 4 year old, they’ll have to be very, very verbal. Her thinking was just a little too sophisticated, even if some of that was the book putting words to ideas that were much fuzzier in her head.

I also had problems with the Bad Guy. Congressman Garvey Quinn is a very bad guy, and even if I’m not a fan of politicians, particularly hypocritical conservative ones, I had trouble with the depth of this man’s evil. But it did make for an interesting plot!

I received this book in my Goody Bag at Bouchercon, for my reading pleasure.  Thank you to the publisher, Avon Books, and to everyone involved in organizing Bouchercon.

1 Comment

Posted by on October 23, 2010 in books, reviews


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One response to “Review: Live to Tell by Wendy Corsi Staub

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