Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyAfter a slow start, Woodward's first novel, which centers on the aftermath of a murder, gathers steam and offers an engaging read. Set in a small Alabama city, the story concerns the trauma wrought on the Spencer family when a mother and her 15-year-old daughter are brutally stabbed to death in the foyer of their fine Old Spring Hill home. The narrative is related from the alternating points of view of a surviving daughter, 17-year-old Laura ``Duck'' Spencer, and of the woman charged with the murder, her father's mistress, artist Catherine Liem. Credible, colorful characters abound, particularly Duck, who commands the reader's allegiance as she journeys through the anguish of losing mother and sister, intense hatred for her father, whom she feels has betrayed her family, disappointment in her first serious relationship and horror at the the eventual revelations about her mother. Woodward, a New Orleans attorney, puts her professional expertise to good use in depicting the legal consequences of the killing: grand jury proceedings, courthouse politics, jailhouse situations. In addition, she renders the Alabama gulf shore with care and maintains suspense until the conclusion, which contains a dandy surprise. Despite some patches of wooden dialogue, this is a memorable literary debut. (Jan.)
School Library JournalYA-Laura Spencer, known to friends and family as Duck, returns home after shopping for her graduation dance dress to find her mother and sister brutally murdered and her little brother, Junior, a Down Syndrome child, hiding in a closet. Catherine Liem, Duck's father's girlfriend, is arrested and charged with the murders based on circumstantial evidence. Each of the family members experiences great difficulty in coping with the situation-Mr. Spencer retreats into silence, Duck's sexual intimacy with her boyfriend ends in disaster, and Junior keeps hiding. The family maid and Duck's grandmother provide loving support and comfort vital to the healing process. Sentenced to life in prison without parole, Catherine attempts suicide; two days later the real killer confesses. Woodward weaves a story with incredibly complete interpersonal relationships. Characterization is strong and readers are kept in suspense until the very end. A real page turner.-Grace Baun, R.E. Lee High School, Springfield, VA
- Penguin Publishing Group
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- Product dimensions:
- 9.32(w) x 6.30(h) x 1.01(d)
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Still Waters based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
this was the best thought out mystery I have ever read. It really took someone with a lot of intelligence to write a book like this. It was slow reading at first but I couldnt put it down after a few chapters.