And When She Was Good

And When She Was Good

Book - 2012
Average Rating:
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Already praised as "a writing powerhouse" (USA Today) and "among the select group of novelists who have invigorated the crime fiction arena with smart, innovative, and exciting work" (George Pelecanos), New York Times bestseller Laura Lippman is constantly sending reviewers back to their thesauruses in search of new and greater accolades.

Her brilliant stand-alone novel, And When She Was Good, only reinforces the fact that she stands tall among today's bestselling elite--including Kate Atkinson, Tana French, Jodi Picoult, and Harlan Coben (who raves, "I love her books!") Based on her acclaimed, multi-award-nominated short story "Scratch a Woman," And When She Was Good is the powerfully gripping, intensely emotional story of a suburban madam, a convicted murderer whose sentence is about to be overturned, and the child they will both do anything to keep.

Lippman has already won virtually every prize the mystery genre has to offer--the Edgar#65533;, Anthony, Agatha, and Nero Wolfe Awards, to name but a few. They'll now have to invent a few new awards just to keep up with her.

Publisher: New York : HarperLuxe, c2012.
Edition: 1st HarperLuxe ed.
ISBN: 9780062201379
0062201379
Branch Call Number: Fiction
Large Print Fic
Characteristics: 442 p. 23 cm.

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j
johncruse
Apr 26, 2016

A sad and brutal story.

l
LauraSteinert
Aug 16, 2014

A very interesting read. I struggled all the way through to like Helen, but her assurances that she really was a good person and none of it was her fault did not convince me anymore than she could convince herself. A stark change from the Tess series, and reminds me a bit of Emma--a heroine one can never really like but who can't seem to see that she creates her own misery.

Not a book for teens, I think, although most of the graphic descriptions on expects a sex worker book to include are left out. It does feel as if Lippman is lecturing us all on the evils of sex trade, but a likeable character would not have hurt, and the time she took to bash Lesbian ministers was just plain annoying. As long as you don't expect Tess to show up, you might like the book. I think she was trying to do an Upton Sinclair "The Jungle" type social critique.

Lars Keplar or Steig Larssen do a better job but are far more graphic.

BCD2013 May 12, 2014

NYPL Staff Pick
The owner of an escort service must disappear from her life when the murderer she secretly sent to prison is released and may discover he is her child’s father.
- Selection Team

Don27 Sep 01, 2013

This book seemed very ordinary to me. Well-plotted and it read fast, but I didn't feel there was any real depth to the characters. Why do I want to know about these people? They were all criminals, with no appeal at all to me. No interest in reading any other of her novels. Also puzzled why it is considered a mystery. Yes, someone was killed, but the focus of the book was not primarily on who-dun-it.

b
Blueweed
Jun 16, 2013

I am a major fan of all Laura Lippman's novels - but, this one was especially riveting plot wise and her main character, as ever, complex and appealing - not easy to pull-off when that person is a prostitute and madam - no cliches here. And - her take on human nature always satisfies, in that her characters have many facets and great observations. Since I advocate decriminalizing sex-work, this novel's theme is right up my political/philosophical alley. Plus - I grew up near Baltimore - so, it's trip back home when I read her.

v
VRMurphy
Feb 21, 2013

Above-average good read, with characters we haven't seen before. Oh great, another new-to-me author I'm going to have to stack up!

ehbooklover Jan 26, 2013

A riveting book. At first I found it quite slow going but a buildup of tension and fear drew me into the story and I couldn’t stop reading. As opposed to portraying the characters as one dimensional villains, the author provides context for their choices and actions via the use of flashbacks.

e
eleanorthomas
Dec 13, 2012

Maybe I am the only person in North America who does not like this book, but I don't. I kept skipping paragraphs and even pages at a time, without losing any important information about character, theme or plot. After the rave reviews, I was amazed at just how pedestrian I found this. I am a huge mystery/crime fan, but this to me had the tone and cadence of a 1980 romance novel. Not my genre.

dollfacecrafter Oct 19, 2012

Laura Lippman books are so engrossing and the way she tells a story is so riveting. I loved this story about a girl who had few choices in life and turned them around for good, although challenging, she did what she had to do. I can relate.

r
Roundcat
Sep 08, 2012

Telling the story from the main character's point of view, but moving back and forth from her childhood to the present (2011), gives us insight into the reasons for Helen/Heloise's solutions to the challenges in her life and her motivations. However, other characters in the story are allowed to disagree with her, thereby, giving perspective. The skillfulness of the storytelling adds to the tension and terror as the threads of Helen/Heloise's life come together in a truly frightening climax. Another Laura Lippman page turner.

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