I Know Where You Live by Gregg Olsen
11/15/22; 304 pages
Thomas & Mercer
I Know Where You Live by Gregg Olsen is an intense family drama involving a search for closure and revenge.
Violet told her mother, Rose, what Papa, her grandfather did to
her when she was a child and she wasn't believed. Rose told her to
forget about it, to let it go. Violet's younger sister Lily didn't
know what happened, but she knew her sister was experiencing some
emotional trauma. Now Violet is getting married and she does not
want Papa there, but he shows up with Nana anyway. At the reception he experiences
a severe allergic reaction to shellfish, collapses, is
hospitalized, and then unexpectedly dies in the hospital.
At the same time Violet, who has been attending a support group for survivors of sexual abuse is trying to take back her power. She believes the best course of action is to eliminate the perpetrators permanently. If the monsters are removed, the survivors can experience healing and reclaim their power.
Chapters alternate between the point-of-view of Violet, Lily, and Rose. All three women are fully realized characters. Their relationships with each other are complicated. Violet calls Rose by her given name and not mom. She talks to her, but gives a measured amount of time to her. Lily will not speak to her mother at all. Roses mother, Nana, has been in denial over what her husband has done too. It is truly a family legacy of abuse and denial which may be difficult for some readers.
The writing is quite good and the pace moves along quickly. Along with the multiple characters there are also multiple timelines, all of which is easy to keep track of as the narrative continues. The interaction and drama between the family members is compelling and realistic. The surprises aren't really twists or shocking reveals as they are easy to guess. The vigilante behavior is a shocking surprise, but also sadly understandable as a form of justice. This is a family trying to heal a deep wound and overcome a devastating legacy.
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