Last Day

Last Day

by Luanne Rice


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From celebrated New York Times bestselling author Luanne Rice comes a riveting story of a seaside community shaken by a violent crime and a tragic loss.

Years ago, Beth Lathrop and her sister Kate suffered what they thought would be the worst tragedy of their lives the night both the famous painting Moonlight and their mother were taken. The detective assigned to the case, Conor Reid, swore to protect the sisters from then on.

Beth moved on, throwing herself fully into the art world, running the family gallery, and raising a beautiful daughter with her husband Pete. Kate, instead, retreated into herself and took to the skies as a pilot, always on the run. When Beth is found strangled in her home, and Moonlight goes missing again, Detective Reid can’t help but feel a sense of déjà vu.

Reid immediately suspects Beth’s husband, whose affair is a poorly kept secret. He has an airtight alibi—but he also has a motive, and the evidence seems to point to him. Kate and Reid, along with the sisters’ closest childhood friends, struggle to make sense of Beth’s death, but they only find more questions: Who else would have wanted Beth dead? What’s the significance of Moonlight?

Twenty years ago, Reid vowed to protect Beth and Kate—and he’s failed. Now solving the case is turning into an obsession . . .

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781542016353
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 02/01/2020
Pages: 412
Sales rank: 16,165
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Luanne Rice is the New York Times bestselling author of thirty-four novels that have been translated into twenty-four languages. In 2002, Connecticut College awarded Rice an honorary degree, and she also received an honorary doctorate from Saint Joseph College. In June 2014, she received the 2014 Connecticut Governor’s Arts Award for excellence as a literary artist.

Several of Rice’s novels have been adapted for television, including Crazy in Love, for TNT; Blue Moon, for CBS; Follow the Stars Home and Silver Bells, for the Hallmark Hall of Fame; and Beach Girls, for Lifetime.

Rice is a creative affiliate of the Safina Center, an organization that brings together scientists, artists, and writers to inspire a deeper connection with nature—especially the sea. Rice is an avid environmentalist and advocate for families affected by domestic violence. She lives on the Connecticut Shoreline.

Date of Birth:

September 25, 1955

Place of Birth:

New Britain, CT

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Last Day 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
MonnieR 15 days ago
When I look at the sum of the parts, it was Gestalt. The individual parts, however, sometimes left a bit to be desired. At an art gallery in a small community along the Connecticut shore, Beth Lathrop and her slightly older sister Kate lost their mother - and nearly their own lives - during a robbery at the gallery 23 years ago. Young detective Conor Reid managed to save the girls, but the gruesome circumstances left an imprint on his mind that he could never forget - nor could the sisters; their own father was convicted of masterminding the crime, which included the theft of a special painting, and he has been in prison ever since. In the present day, Beth is running the museum, married and has a teenage daughter Sam. Her husband, Pete, helps with the gallery and has an ongoing not-so-secret affair with a young woman who subsequently gave birth to his child. Not a pleasant time for Beth and Sam, needless to say. But then, the unthinkable happens: Beth is found murdered - strangled in horrific fashion - and that special painting that was stolen and found years ago has gone missing once again. Bringing the story full circle is that Reid, now a seasoned detective, is once again assigned to the case. It's helpful that Reid needs little when it comes to background; goodness knows he's followed the lives of Beth and Kate ever since the case 23 years ago (if it had been in any other book, I'd have called him a low-key stalker). But it comes in handy during his investigation, as does the help he gets from his Coast Guard brother, Tom. But early on, Reid has only one real suspect: Beth's lying, cheating, mean, mistreating husband, Pete, who, alas, has an unshakable alibi. So what's a detective to do? Well, for starters, I'd suggest that someone decide what to call him. All the other characters are referred to by their first names; not so the detective, who goes by "Conor" and "Reid" when the mood strikes, I guess. Besides being a frustrating inconsistency, it actually made me wonder whether his name is Conor Reid or Reid Conor. As the investigation moves along, readers get a glimpse of the relationship among Beth, Kate and their long-time female friends Scotty and Lulu - who call their collective selves the Compass Rose. Best buds since childhood, they shared secret after secret; but as it turns out, all four may not have been privy to all of them, much to the disappointment of Kate, who carved a life for herself outside of the art world by becoming an in-demand private pilot and now feels left out. All of that brings me to another frustrating aspect: an overabundance of detail, whether it be on works of art, history, or even the characters' backgrounds, quite a bit of which wasn't all that relevant to the plot. I won't call it uninteresting - I found much of it was educational, in fact - but it just seemed to overwhelm what could (should?) have been a shorter book. Somewhere around the middle, I began to suspect the identity of Beth's killer - and that was more than enough incentive to keep me glued to the pages from then on (for the record, I was right). I admit to losing a bit of enthusiasm at the ghostly appearance of one of the characters - what the heck is that all about, I asked myself - but as I said early on, overall this is a solid effort that I'm sure will please many readers, including me. Good choice for the Amazon First Reads program!
JamieS 3 days ago
I've read some of this authors other book and was looking forward to this since I'd not read one in a while. It was okay, but not what I remembered her writing like. Could be read in a day and maybe something most people enjoy...just not my cup of tea. Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for an e-arc in exchange for an honest review.
LoriKB 5 days ago
“Murder didn’t just take one life, it stole the essence, will, and ease from everyone it touched. It took their old lives and left them to make their way in a completely new and uncertain world.” Family. Friends. Secrets. Murder. This book has it all, and then some. Beth Lathrop and her sister Kate are victims in a horrific crime that leaves their mother dead. Fast forward approximately 20 years and now Beth is found dead in an equally horrific way. First detective on the scene is Conor Reid, who was a newbie on the first case. This becomes something personal as he works the case and follows all leads. This is a typical murder mystery with a lot of family drama and secrets thrown in. Four childhood friends consider themselves as a Compass Rose. This story delves into the complexities of this friendship, and the secrets they all hold. Characters are semi-likeable, although a few I found to be quite shallow. Story line moves at a fairly quick pace but parts seemed to be to drawn out for my liking. Where I thought the story might go, just seems to drop off and is never fully explained or revisited. I did like Beth’s point of view that was added towards the end. Thanks to NetGalley and Thomas & Mercer for this ARC. Opinion is mine alone.
Sjturner 9 days ago
Last Day by Luanne Rice is the story of two sisters Beth and Kate. The book starts out when Kate finds her sisters murdered body. Who would want to kill Beth? Was it her husband, who was having an affair and had a child with his girlfriend, or some stranger? Kate finds out her sister was keeping a lot of secrets from her and so were all their friends. The story kept me guessing till the end who the killer was. But for me there were a lot of questions not answered. I thought the ending was rushed and I would have liked to have known what happened to some of the characters after the killer was revealed. Thanks to Netgalley for this ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.
brf1948 15 days ago
I received a free electronic copy of this excellent novel from author Luanne Rice and Thomas & Mercer Publisher. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. I have read this novel of my own volition, and this review reflects my honest opinion of this work. I am pleased to recommend Luanne Rice to friends and family. She writes an excellent tale. Luanne Rice creates a tightly drawn tale about family relationships and what makes a friendship work. 'Last Day' is an excellent story wrapped around four besties, now pushing 40, but devoted friends from childhood on. We see the relationships they all have with their children, and what it takes to keep it all together when one of those stanchions of the neighborhood and a lifetime of sharing is taken before her time. Illness might be overcome, but this was obviously murder. Again. As was the murder of Helen Woodward. It brings back all the pain and angst of the murder of Beth and Kate's mother 23 years ago. Those relationships that look firm and tight from afar - really aren't. Where can you go for facts when everyone is remembering only how it used to be? Someone is lying. Who? 1 like