Friday, October 1, 2010

Review of The Poison Tree

*note: this cover is from the British edition. I couldn't find an image of the American cover, which is red with a black tree.

The Poison Tree

by Erin Kelly

Adult Mystery

Pub date January 6, 2011

I won't lie, I read this book mainly because it was compared to Tana French's mysteries. It has a similar carefully built suspense but the similarity ends there.

The Poison Tree jumps back and forth between Karen's present, in which she has just picked up her boyfriend from a ten-year stint in prison, and the past, when she first met him and his sister Biba. Karen was a straight-laced, somewhat uptight college graduate who let her hair down for one glorious summer. However, the summer ended with a murder, and it isn't until the novel's climax that we find out what really happened.

Erin Kelly is a beautiful writer, and her greatest strength is evoking the little sensory details that bring a scene alive. Reading The Poison Tree made me want to visit London and see it through Karen's eyes.

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