The Siren

Alison Bruce’s The Siren involves two friends story, murder, and a missing child. From the beginning we know the women, Kimberly and Rachel, are hiding out and ready to take off and find a new hiding spot, but we don’t know what they’re running from or why. When one is murdered and the other’s son disappears, Detective Goodhew tries to piece together the crimes, current and past, and bring back Riley.

From the beginning I had no empathy for Kimberly. She’s caught in lie after lie. I felt like Bruce was trying to force me to like Kimberly or blame me for not liking her just because she was a beautiful young mother. In a crime novel, its not always necessary to have empathy for the victim, but usually theres a bit of concern or something. I think part of the reason that her child was involved was to provoke this reaction in the reader, but I didn’t feel it and it felt forced.

Also, the Detective is a young, rebellious, officer who doesn’t play nice with other police and goes off on his own to try to find the kidnapper. Maybe there was more history in the previous novel about why he deserved the freedom that he had within his police work, but he didn’t seem to be doing an incredible job.

This novel fell flat to me. There was something missing and the characters didn’t feel real. I can’t explain exactly what it is. Do we need to care about the victim to care about a crime? In a crime novel, does the Detective have to have some special skills to break the case in order for the book to stand? I wouldn’t think so, but something didn’t fit. Maybe its the combination of lackluster main victim and police work. Maybe the story wasn’t told in a way that captivated me or that I believed.

Read April 2013

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