How It Happened by Michael Koryta
Little, Brown and Company: 5/15/18
eBook review copy; 688 pages
How It Happened by Michael Koryta is a highly recommended murder mystery.
The novel opens in Port Hope, Maine, with Kimmie Crepeaux confessing to
Rob Barrett, an FBI investigator and interrogation
specialist, how Jackie Pelletier and Ian Kelly died and where to
find their bodies. She also names the killer - local respected
caretaker Mathias Burke. Kimmie claims Mathias forced her
and her friend Cass Odom to assist him. Kimmie tells Barrett
everything that happened in exact details. The problem is Cass is dead
from an overdose and the bodies can't be found where Kimmie swears they
should be found. All of this increasingly points to her unreliability as
a witness. Kimmie is a heroin addict who already has a reputation for
committing petty crimes.
As the search for the bodies continues, Barrett's reputation is on the
line. He spent summers in Port Hope with his grandfather, and apparently
had an antagonistic relationship with the suspect Mathias Burk.
Barrett believes Kimmie, but when all the evidence points to her lying,
his reputation and career suffer. However, Jackie Pelletier's
father, Howard, still wants answers and pleads with Barrett to resume
In How It Happened Koryta has written a compelling psychological
study and gripping murder mystery. This is a engrossing plot populated
by well-developed characters. The quality of the writing is great;
Koryta delivers expressive prose, and an unpredictable, intricate plot
full of dark secrets. The character development is amazing. These are
all wounded, flawed individuals who are struggling with their own secret
inner turmoil and their personal backgrounds. This would be an
excellent page-turning choice for summer reading.
Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Little, Brown and Company via Netgalley.