Review: The Likeness by Tana French

the likenessThis is the sequel to In the Woods, although it’s been so long since I read that one, that it may as well be a standalone book. I don’t think you need to read In the Woods to enjoy this one. I went back and read my review, which was pretty sparse. So that doesn’t tell me anything except that Cassie was a character in the book. In The Likeness, however, she is the main character. As a former undercover agent, Cassie is brought to the scene of a murder because the girl who has been killed not only looks exactly like Cassie, but has taken the identification of Lexie Madison, a pseudonym Maddox used when she was undercover. It’s doubly creepy.

Frank, a manipulative detective who worked with Cassie when she was undercover, convinces Cassie to assume the life of “Lexie” and see if she can uncover who murdered her. They somehow play off the fact that Lexie is dead, and invent a story about a coma. Once Cassie has studied as much as possible about the dead girl’s life, and her four housemates, she infiltrates.

The story unwinds slowly, and we are as much in the dark about Lexie’s fate as Cassie is. Bits are revealed but we don’t know what to make of them. There’s an element of fear that pervades through the book – at any moment, Cassie could be found out. And obviously the murderer knows he finished the job, so when will he reveal himself? (Or she. I guess.)

A tad disappointing in that there were a ton of red herrings and some loose ends that didn’t get tied up nicely. But a very interesting and unnverving story, written beautifully.

Another one to check off for the TBR Pile Challenge!

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