Long Bright River

Thoughts by Liz Moore, 2020, 482 pages

Challenge: TOB Long List, Theta Friends Book Read
Genre: Thriller
Type/Source: Hardcover, purchased from an Indie
 Why I read this now:  First Book of 2020 Selection

MOTIVATION for READING: I really like Liz Moore.

WHAT’s it ABOUT:  Mickey is a cop, a beat cop on the streets of a poor neighborhood in Philly. She comes from impoverished family circumstances. Her sister, same genes + same environment, takes the other turn in life and is a drug addict prostitute.

Young prostitute drug-addicted women start turning up dead and Mickey’s sister goes missing. Mickey is compelled to find out what is happening but gets involved in things beyond her scope and support system. A support system that is questionable, at best.

THOUGHTS: The “something elusive” that makes me really fall hard for a story didn’t happen with this one. But as I now have a few days away to ponder my reactions, I wonder if that is the point of it. Our MC is shyly prickly and doesn’t want to need people. She has no friends and doesn’t even realize it! THAT is what is weird to me, I think? She is heads-down, do the job, do right and don’t call attention. But humans can’t operate well being so alone – we need other people. When she realizes this, she is caught up in her confusion and fear of trust and what it all means, to have any good sense on what to do. It comes across as naiveté and it just seemed so out of sorts for her career as a police officer. Again, it takes all kinds and this is a story that confronts many biases.

RATING:  Four slices of pie. No pie mentioned.

 

 

 

pierating

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15 thoughts on “Long Bright River

  1. She sounds like the protagonist of A Deadly Education, who also has no friends, although she does make some progress on this in the course of her adventures. What do Mickey’s adventures have to do with the river of the title?

    1. The Tennyson poem The Lotos-Eaters is the epigraph and on page 28, this sentence describes the first dead girl found, “Below this makeshift tourniquet, the long bright river of her vein.” The opoid crisis and it’s movement through communities? The neighborhood is also along the Delaware River originally settled as a well-to-do enclave outside the grime of Phila central.

      I didn’t answer your question.
      A review in the Wash Post says that this crime thriller “nervously twists, turn and subverts the reader expectations.”

        1. AND! stolen from another review I just read, this quote was in the book, too, but I failed to note it myself: “people loving and beloved, one after another, in a line, in a river, no fount and no outlet, a long bright river of departed souls.”

  2. I listened to this on audio, and it’s been a while, but I think I might have given it the same rating! I liked how the author showed Mickey for most of the book was so focused on her sister’s problems that she ignored her own very large, growing problem(s). Her identity was all wrapped up in being a police officer — the “good sister”?–but she still felt compelled to protect her deeply troubled sister from danger even when it meant bending or breaking the law herself.

    1. The thriller isn’t the main plot thread, much more character-based, so I hesitate to even call it such (since I really don’t like typical “thrillers”!) Let’s say mystery, instead.

  3. Has been on my list for a long time but then I read a book with a similar title and got confused. I swear, it’s hard these days. It’s still on my list and on my Kindle.

        1. I was thinking of the one about the three women who take the whitewater rafting trip with a guide of questionable experience in Maine, by Erica Ferencik!

    1. Hello Jenclair, thanks for stopping by. Have you read anything else by Liz Moore? She’s good.

      Your envelopes for your correspondence are just beautiful. Will you be participating in #LetterMo this year?

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