Idaho

Emily Ruskovich. Random House, $27 (320p) ISBN 978-0-8129-9404-9
In Ruskovich’s beautifully constructed debut novel, Ann attempts to piece together her husband Wade’s past—namely, the murder of his younger daughter, May, by his ex-wife, Jenny, and the disappearance of his elder daughter, June, which took place years ago, on the mountain where Wade and Ann now live. The book is set in the alluring and haunting landscape of Idaho, spanning over 50 years, and depicting Ann’s obsession and determination to figure out what exactly Jenny’s motives were and just what happened to the girls. Jenny is now in jail, mostly keeping to herself while serving a life sentence, and Ann is caring for Wade while he suffers from genetic early-onset dementia, training dogs, and making knives. All the while, Ann and Wade hope that June may still be alive, after 18 years of no news. With her amazing sentences, Ruskovich draws readers into the novel’s world, using a number of well-developed voices to describe various perspectives, allowing readers to understand the complexities of the story as well as Ann does. Shocking and heartbreaking, Ruskovich has crafted a remarkable love story and a narrative that will stay with readers. Agent: Jin Auh, Wylie Agency. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/21/2016
Release date: 01/03/2017
Hardcover - 978-1-4328-4095-2
Paperback - 336 pages - 978-0-8129-8446-0
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