Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Book Review: The Likeness by Tana French

BIG THANKS to Kate and Penguin Group for my review copy!

“The Likeness” by Tana French

Published by Viking Adult, a division of Penguin Group

Rating: 5 stars

“The Likeness” takes places six months after Tana French’s first novel, “In the Woods”. Detective Cassie Maddox has been through a lot of trauma and she wants nothing to do with murder cases and has transferred out of that unit. One day, a young woman is stabbed to death and Cassie is called in to help solve the murder. Things start to get creepy when it turns out that the girl looks exactly like Cassie and her ID mysteriously reads Lexie Madison, an alias that Cassie had used years earlier. By lying to those who knew the woman, a plan is hatched to have Cassie go undercover as Lexie and find out who killed her. Things become complicated when Cassie begins to develop genuine feelings for Lexie’s roommates and gets too personally involved with the potential suspects.

"The Likeness" drew me in right from the start and I became immersed in Cassie's world of deception, danger and drama. While I usually appreciate an author's vivid descriptions of his or her characters, Tana French outdoes herself by painting such elaborate portraits of each character, along with their nuances, quirks and thought patterns. I could easily envision the tight-knit group of friends and Cassie slowly letting her guard down and becoming close to them. Most mystery books tend to focus a great deal on the plot but this one builds up momentum slowly and French never neglects the characters’ development.

I don’t know if this book will be made into a movie, but I can easily envision it all on screen perfectly. I found myself becoming really attached to the characters, especially to Cassie, and I was really sad when the book finished. I hope there will be more books about Detective Cassie in the future!


bermudaonion said...

I guess I should read In The Woods (which is in a stack right beside me) before I tackle this one.

Anonymous said...

I've been on a waiting list to get In the Woods!! I can't wait now that I've read your review for this one! Thanks!

Sheri S. said...

Tana French's books are definitely worth the wait :)

Anonymous said...

I have to chime in the chorus of "I'll read *In the Woods* first, then get to *The Likeness*"

Thanks for the review ... I'll be adding both to my ever-growing wish list.