Open House

Katie Sise. Little A, $24.95 (274p) ISBN 978-1-5420-9265-4
Sise (We Were Mothers) weaves together the stories of two crimes in Waverly, N.Y., in this crafty novel. Things open with the discovery of a bracelet belonging to student Emma McCullough, who disappeared 10 years earlier from the University of Yarrow in Waverly. The police reopen the case, which triggers the grief held by Emma’s younger sister, Haley, now a med student at Yarrow, as well as the pain carried by Priya, a former professor of Emma’s, whose husband, Brad Aarons, had an affair with Emma and is now Haley’s biology professor. Meanwhile, Haley and her fiancé are house hunting, and Josie and Noah Carmichael, their real estate agents, were close friends with Emma. At an open house arranged by Josie, Haley is surprised to see Brad and Priya, and shocked to find Josie bloodied and unconscious on the kitchen floor. As Haley learns about Emma’s involvement with Brad and Priya, she wonders if the attack on Josie was connected with her sister’s disappearance. The narrative alternates in present-day chapters from Haley’s and Priya’s perspectives alongside a parallel narrative in Emma’s voice from the year she vanished. All the characters have secrets, and while the prose is fairly flat, Sise’s talent is her ability to keep readers guessing about which character might be covering for whom, and she keeps the surprises coming. This will appeal to fans of Big Little Lies. Agent: Dan Mandel, Sanford J. Greenburger Assoc. (Dec.)
Reviewed on : 09/21/2020
Release date: 01/01/2021
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 978-1-5420-9267-8
MP3 CD - 978-1-7213-5674-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-7213-5673-7
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