Desire Lines

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I became a pretty huge fan of Christina Baker Kline after reading Orphan Train several months ago, but I had no idea that she had written other books until I decided to use my library sleuth skills and do a little digging.  It turns out, she has several others (which you may have already known, but I didn't!)  I decided to read Desire Lines next, because it's a mystery, and I've been on a little mystery kick lately.  It was so good!  So needless to say, last week was another no-sleep-because-I-can't-put-this-book-down kind of week.  Here's the blurb from the back of the book, in case you're interested:

On the night of her high school graduation, Kathryn Campbell sits around a bonfire with her four closest friends, including the beautiful but erratic Jennifer.  "I'll be fine," Jennifer says, as she walks away from the dying embers and towards the darkness of the woods.  She never comes back.

Ten years later, Kathryn has tried to build a life for herself, with a marriage and a career as a journalist, but she still feels the conspicuous void of Jennifer's disappearance.  When her divorce sends her reeling back to the Maine town where she grew up, she finds herself plunged into a sea of memories.  With nothing left to lose, she is determined to answer on simple question: What happened to Jennifer Pelletier?

This book has a lot of things that appeal to me.  Kline is an amazing writer, and the characters are very realistic and relatable.  A lot of mystery stories I've read have had the main characters immediately turn into fearless super-detectives - leaping into the process of solving the mystery with reckless abandon.  I don't know about you, but I'm not Nancy Drew, and it would not be in my nature to slink around outside by myself in the middle of the night, or sneak into a suspected murderer's house to look for clues, or decide to single-handedly take down the criminal without involving the police.  Then again, who knows?  Maybe I would under the right circumstances, but in this novel, the main character, Kathryn, is much more reluctant and unsure.  She procrastinates; she doesn't really know how to begin, or where to look for information.  She cares very much about figuring out what happened to her best friend, but she also doesn't put herself in any sort of danger until the very end, when she is getting very close to figuring things out and knows it's up to her to find the one piece of information that the police could never find. 

This story is elusive, relatable, exciting, and heartbreaking all at once.  It's probably one of the best books I've read this year, and I can't wait to read more by this author.

Desire Lines is available through Infosoup if you're interested and want to check it out for yourself!  Here is the link: http://search.infosoup.org/iii/encore/record/C__Rb2001953__Sdesire%20lin...

Check out Kiley's blog at www.threehundredpages.com