Saturday, March 21, 2009

Shoot the Moon - Billie Letts

Summary: In 1972, windswept DeClare, Oklahoma was consumed by a terrifying crime: the murder of a young mother, Gaylene Harjo, and the disappearance of her baby, Nicky Jack. When the child's pajama bottoms were discovered on the banks of Willow Creek, everyone feared that he, too, had been killed, although his body was never found.
Now, nearly thirty years later, Nicky Jack mysteriously returns to DeClare, shocking the town with his sudden reappearance and stirring up long-buried memories. But what he discovers about the night he vanished is far more than he, or anyone, bargains for. Piece by piece, what emerges is a story of dashed hopes, desperate love, and an act with repercussions that still cry out for justice...and redemption.

My Review: Mark Albright is a Beverly Hills veterinarian, who at first glance seems like a snob living a privileged life thanks to his affluent parents. A closer look will show that his snobbery is a cover-up for his insecurity in feeling that he doesn't belong. Those feelings prove correct when he discovers some papers in his recently deceased father's safety deposit box telling him that he was adopted. Armed with this new information he quickly heads out of Beverly Hills to small town Oklahoma to find his birth mother.

Once arriving in DeClare, Mark begins to uncover the secrets of his past first by learning that his mother was murdered 25 years ago and that up until now he was presumed dead as well. His mother never revealed who his father was, so Mark sets on a search to uncover this information while seeking for the truth of his mother's death. Along the way Mark also meets a couple of villains, one who is the sheriff of this small town.

Along with the predictable villain sheriff, the woman situation is one that is just expected from this type of story. Of course, while Mark is searching for answers, he falls in love. This drives me absolutely crazy in most books. However, I must say that I was surprised to find the relationship side of this story, although somewhat uncomfortable at first, end up being an enjoyable part to the story.

What is not so predictable in this story is the who-done-it. I loved the manner in which the author twisted her story so that one moment you would be so sure that you knew who the father was and who the murderer was only to turn the page and discover you are wrong.

I also felt that the author did a terrific job of introducing her characters and creating emotions for the reader with them. She was even able to uniquely give you a look at Mark's birth mother through her diary. This diary of a teenage girl had me recalling just what it was like to be that age... how everything is so dramatic and feels so life-changing. I adored this intelligent, artsy, athletic young girl whose life path was drastically altered by her unexpected pregnancy.

Overall, although I didn't love this novel as much as I did Where the heart Is, I still found it to be a very enjoyable read. It is a fairly light novel that one can soar through quickly. Yet it is a story that you will be sure to remember.

My Rating: 4 stars

If I had to sum this book up in one sentence it would be: An enjoyable, memorable book to lose yourself in for a couple days.

1 comment:

MindySue said...

I haven't read this one, but I LOVED Where the Heart Is. It was fabulous.

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