Saturday 9 January 2016

The Good Girl

Finished January 7
The Good Girl by Mary Kubica, read by Lindy Nettleton, Johnny Heller, Tom Taylorson, and Andi Arndt

This novel has several narrators, and jumps back and forth between two time periods, identified as "before" and "after." Eve Dennett is married to a judge, and her younger daughter Mia was kidnapped in the before portion of this story. In the after portion, Mia is home, but has lost her memory. Eve tells us how she reacted to Mia's disappearance, the worry for her daughter's safety, and the loneliness she feels as her husband reacts very differently to the situation.
Another narrator is Gabe Hoffman, the detective assigned to the case. Gabe doesn't think much of the judge and his cold attitude towards his daughter's disappearance. He is drawn to Eve, partly through sympathy for her situation and partly as a man. As he sees her often to update her on the case, he sometimes crosses the line from professional to personal, not only with Eve, but at other points in his investigation where he shows his caring side for the people he encounters. The third main narrator is Colin Thatcher, the man who kidnapped Mia. The situation is more complex than that sounds because Colin's motives are both personal and altruistic, and the kidnapping has layers to it that are gradually revealed. The last narrator is Mia herself, but only in a limited fashion.
This is a story of parents and children, of love and control, of lies and truths. The title speaks to this as well. Is Mia the good girl, or is she the rebel? Is she the art teacher dedicated to bringing out the best in her students, or the wild child leading a dangerous life? Every character in this book has potential for good and bad, and things aren't always as they seem.

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