Tuesday, September 14, 2021

The Necklace

The Necklace by Matt Witten
9/7/21; 304 pages
Oceanview Publishing

The Necklace by Matt Witten is a recommended thriller.

The narrative follows Susan Lentigo currently and twenty years ago. The novel opens during a fund raising event for Susan. Twenty years ago, soon after they bought the beads to make a necklace together, Susan’s seven-year-old daughter Amy was murdered. Now the man who was convicted of her death is going to be executed and Susan is planning to travel in her dilapidated car from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the execution. Her neighbors and friends in her close knit community have donated money to help her get to North Dakota. Susan has never recovered from the death of her daughter. When she discovers a clue involving the necklace Amy made twenty years earlier, the search is on to find more information and the real killer before another young girl is killed.

While your sympathy is with Susan, she is also her worst enemy. She seems emotionally unstable, foolhardy, rude, and quick to anger. She makes several poor, inexplicable choices that are inconceivable and detract from the plot. The clues she is following and her interactions with others aren't entirely believable. The plot will capture your interest, however, in spite of Susan's character. The search for clues and several fortuitous incidents help Susan find the information about who could be the real killer and get her to North Dakota where she finds the FBI agent she worked with twenty years ago and seeks his help.

The plot is easy to follow and read quickly in both timelines, and the switching back and forth in time works in the novel. Susan's search for the truth will grab your attention and even though many of her trials during the trip are a result of her own poor choices, you will still want her to find closure and hope she finds some sense of peace. Once she actually arrives in North Dakota the sense of danger increases. While the ultimate denouement is satisfying, it is not a shocking surprise. 3.5

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Oceanview Publishing.

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