Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Our Little Secret

Our Little Secret: The True Story of a Teenager Killer and the Silence of a Small New England Town
by Kevin Flynn, Rebecca Lavoie
Penguin Group, May 2010
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages
ISBN-13: 9780425234655
true crime

Synopsis from publisher:
The true story of a teenage killer and the silence of a small New England town.
For twenty years Daniel Paquette's murder in New Hampshire went unsolved. It remained a secret between two high school friends until Eric Windhurst's arrest in 2005. What was revealed was a crime born of adolescent passion between Eric and Daniel's stepdaughter, Melanie- redefining the meaning of loyalty, justice, and revenge.
My Thoughts:

True crime aficionados will probably enjoy this book or be better able to compare it to other books of that genre. This wasn't necessarily a well written true crime novel, but I am certain that residents or former residents from Hopkinton, New Hampshire, and the surrounding area will find it interesting. It certainly details the case and the investigation.

While the reader knows who did it before hand - due to the back cover alone for those of us who didn't follow this case - this true crime story wasn't quite as disturbing as one would imagine. Or at least it wasn't to me. The murdered man was a child molester and the killer an impressionable teenager. Those who initially knew and kept silent were basically a very small group of teens. There have been many other cases where people have kept quiet about a murder.
recommended - if you like true crime


Danny Paquette's killer walked into the visitors' room at the New Hampshire State Prison for Men. He was cheerful - even pleased - to see a new face, someone who hadn't known him before he was arrested. opening

It took twenty years to solve the case of who shot Danny Paquette in his own backyard. Not twenty years of complete mystery - for the police seemed to be perpetually close to cracking the case open - but twenty years of silence. Though some regarded his killing as a senseless murder, many more weren't the least bit sorry that Danny Paquette was dead.
Only one person's finger pulled the trigger, but dozens of others pressed their fingers to pursed lips in silence that perfectly aimed bullet ruined many other lives in addition to the one it ended that day. But as the years passed and the silence grew, many people judged the crime righteous and justified. Many knew. No one spoke. Their reasons varied, but the act of frontier justice was all made easier to bear because of one thing:
Danny Paquette had it coming. pg. 2

In those fleeting moments, they still believe Danny had been injured while working on a bulldozer. pg. 12

No one could have predicted during Danny Paquette's childhood that the investigation of his killing would render such a lengthy list of suspects. pg. 22

On one of these nights, he realized with the force of an avalanche what it was that wasn't right inside him. The feeling he had wasn't nausea, or homesickness for New Hampshire.
The feeling was unbearable, soul-eating guilt.page 126

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