The Necklace

Matt Witten. Oceanview, $26.95 (296p) ISBN 978-1-60809-458-5
Glens Falls, N.Y., waitress Susan Lentigo, the heroine of this affecting thriller from Witten (the Jacob Burns series), is devastated when a sexual predator rapes and strangles her seven-year-old daughter, Amy. Under police interrogation, Curt Jansen, a drifter with a criminal record, confesses to the murder, but recants before his trial, where he’s convicted and sentenced to death. Twenty years later, Jansen finally has a date for his lethal injection, and Susan, who has never recovered from her traumatic loss, sets out alone for North Dakota, where he’s been incarcerated, to witness Jansen’s execution. For a long time, she’s been haunted by a feeling that had she been more alert she could have prevented Amy’s murder. Also, her recent realization that Jansen couldn’t have seen the necklace Amy was wearing, as he claimed in his confession, from where he was standing when he targeted the child leads her to wonder whether the right man is slated to be executed. She doggedly pursues that possibility, afraid that if the real killer is at large, another child may be at risk. Despite an overly melodramatic climax, Witten keeps the reader guessing and the tension high. Fans of amateur investigators with a personal stake in the outcome will be rewarded. Agent: Josh Getzler, HG Literary. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 07/09/2021
Release date: 09/01/2021
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
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