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Sister by Rosamund Lupton

Sister is the debut novel by the British author Rosamund Lupton.  It is an impressive, haunting, harrowing, and heartbreaking debut.

When their mother calls Bee in New York to tell her that her younger sister, Tess, has been missing for four days, Bee catches the next flight to London.  She expects to find Tess and deliver the usual lecture about responsibility.  Instead her sister's body is found in a nearby park.  And despite the police ruling the death a suicide and her family's acceptance of this ruling, Bee is adamant that she knows her sister, that she knows her well enough to know that Tess would never take her own life.  Determined to find her sister's murderer, Bee moves into Tess's apartment and begins her own investigation predicated on the certainty of the closeness of the relationship between herself and Tess.

The story is structured as a long letter that Bee has written to Tess to explain to her sister why she was murdered, who her murderer is, and how Bee failed her sister.  Beautiful, poignant prose details the days leading up to the discovery of Tess's body and Bee's subsequent struggle to put the pieces together of her sister's final days.  Bee hopes the pieces together will reveal a larger picture that points to the identity of Tess's murderer--someone whose cruel manipulations are chilling in their disregard for human life.

Thanks to Bee's insistence on chronological order of events, the suspense is ratcheted up as the reader follows along with Bee's investigation, as Bee drops hints and references foreshadowing later discoveries and as it becomes apparent that Bee herself is not safe from the reach of the dangerous murderer who claimed her sister.  In a story in which neither the narrator nor the reader knows exactly who the murderer is and therefore doesn't know who to trust, this book becomes a nail biting page turner.  The reader will find this grief soaked story incredibly poignant, equal parts terrifying and sorrowful and very hard to put down especially through the last chapters when some heart stopping twists are revealed.

I highly recommend you check this book out the next time you visit the library.

--Reviewed by Ms. Angie


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