Friday, December 27, 2013

The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes

Kirby Mazrachi barely survived the attempt on her life. Just a few years later she begins an internship at the Chicago Sun-Times with the very reporter who once covered her story. Dan doesn't work the crime beat anymore but Kirby doesn't care, she believes that he can help her in tracking down the man who almost ended her life. See, Kirby is convinced that she wasn't the first victim. She believes her would-be murderer is a serial killer who has struck before and will strike again. And Kirby is right. What she doesn't know, however, is that Harper Curtis's victims are spread throughout decades of Chicago's history. Harper Curtis has traveled back and forth through time stalking his victims from the Depression era all the way to Kirby's present in 1993. 

The Shining Girls is such a perfect blend of mystery, thriller, and science fiction... I loved this book much in the same way as I loved James Renner's The Man From Primrose Lane, which is to say completely and utterly without complaint!

The house, the time loops, and the mystery all work together perfectly, something wholly down to Lauren Beukes's extremely tight and careful plotting. And the variety of characters! Holy cow! Beukes introduces a whole cast of victims, essentially offering up a short story to represent them each, detailing a host of facets of each of their lives just before handing them over to her twisted killer. It's a powerful aspect (and definitely something missing from many books), I think, when the author is able to fully build peripheral characters in addition to allowing the main characters to carry the story and all without hampering the pacing of the book. Really it's amazing!

I was so blown away by this book that I really just did not want it to end. I was also so blown away by it that I don't think it's possible for me to do it justice in my review. (D'oh!) Beukes does have two other titles out that I've not yet read but have earned her the highest of praise. I'll be adding them to my TBR very, very soon. I highly suggest checking out this latest, though, and sooner rather than later!

Rating: 5/5

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