Wilde Lake

Wilde Lake

A Novel

Book - 2016
Average Rating:
11
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Luisa "Lu" Brant is the newly elected--and first female--state's attorney of Howard County, Maryland, a job in which her widower father famously served. Fiercely intelligent and ambitious, she sees an opportunity to make her name by trying a mentally disturbed drifter accused of beating a woman to death in her home. It's not the kind of case that makes headlines, but peaceful Howard County doesn't see many homicides. As Lu prepares for the trial, the case dredges up painful memories, reminding her small but tight-knit family of the night when her brother, AJ, saved his best friend at the cost of another man's life. Only eighteen, AJ was cleared by a grand jury. Now, Lu wonders if the events of 1980 happened as she remembers them. What details might have been withheld from her when she was a child? The more she learns about the case, the more questions arise. What does it mean to be a man or woman of one's times? Why do we ask our heroes of the past to conform to the present's standards? Is that fair? Is it right? Propelled into the past, she discovers that the legal system, the bedrock of her entire life, does not have all the answers. Lu realizes that even if she could learn the whole truth, she probably wouldn't want to.
Publisher: New York, NY : William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, 2016.
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780062083456
Branch Call Number: FIC Lippm
Characteristics: 352 pages ; 24 cm.

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a
aafleming
Nov 04, 2017

A fairly good book from a very readable author, but she has done much better. The book is filled with "To Kill A Mockingbird" references, but . . . why? After finishing it, I see no purpose in it and am baffled by why she did this especially since the ending differs completely from the ending of "To Kill A Mockingbird." In this story, in the end, everybody turns out to have been a jerk. Was this the point, to write a similar story where there are no heroes, and no "mockingbird"?

b
brigpa1
May 20, 2017

I had been a Laura Lippman fan with her Tess Monaghan series but then gave up as she went on to other writing. With Wilde Lake I am back in the fold. I really enjoyed this memoir style account of the lives of circle of friends from their high school days to their present lives.

z
Zoelexi777
Sep 22, 2016

This is the first time reading Laura Lippman. I found it slow and it flipped from past to present. After getting more than half way through the book, I skimmed to the end. I probably won't pick up another of her books.

l
LauraSteinert
Sep 07, 2016

Laura Lippman's parents' combined genetic material was not all that good to her, but Luisa Brant--beautiful, smart, riding her daddy's coatails--was certainly blessed with great genes. Apparently, that gives her (and Lippman) every right to be nasty, judgemental snarky mean girls.
There was probably a good story buried in the book, but by page 70 I was so disgusted with Lu's (and Lippman's) superiority complex and woman bashing that I am now and forever done with Lippman.

m
merliberry
Sep 01, 2016

Lippman is a New York Times bestselling author, famous for her detective novels set in Baltimore. Wilde Lake follows lawyer Lu Brant as she investigates a present day murder while also delving into her family's secretive past. The novel is slow to gain momentum and I found the alternating perspectives--told from third person in the present day, first person in the past--to be clumsy, making it even more difficult to become absorbed in the plot.

b
brangwinn
Jul 07, 2016

I picked this book up thinking it was another Tess Monaghan mystery, but this wasn’t your ordinary detective novel. This is a story with the same message as To Kill a Mockingbird. A determined woman follows in the steps of her father as a U.S. Prosecuting Attorney, only to uncover some very uncomfortable facts about her brother and father. The story moves back and forth between first person, Lu’s life at present and third person, Lu’s childhood memories. This delineation in the telling of the story helps as her memories collide with her childhood view of her older brother and father as heroes, and the uncomfortable truths she discovers about things they covered up years ago.

hholley Jun 14, 2016

Wilde Lake was slow to start, but once it got going, I wasn't able to put it down. The story alternates between present day and thirty years earlier when the protagonist, Luisa, is a child. Through these two different lenses, the characters are strongly developed as they struggle with what makes someone good or bad and if it's as black and white as they might like to think. There is a strong theme of how the idea of morality changes as you grow older as well as how the context of memories change as you mature, which was enjoyable, especially in contrast with the criminal court cases playing out in the background.

c
caj1222204441801
May 31, 2016

Very disappointing considering the hype of this book. I thought I would die from the boredom till after the 5th chapter.

r
Roundcat
May 27, 2016

Lu Brant digs into the past and discovers its effect on her present life. What her family felt she was able to understand when she was a child and the stories they told her, as well as the justifications they hold onto about their actions, are slowly revealed. As Lu puts the jigsaw of pieces together, the picture and the effect on the participants is horrifying. She confronts some of the participants and the effect is either devastating for them and her, they have built a wall of denial around their part in it, or they are too old and fixed in their ways to be held accountable. Sometimes we look back and decide to make a new story. Is this a good or a bad idea? Only time will tell.

ehbooklover May 24, 2016

Absolutely gripping! I really liked the way that Lippman chose to tell this story: the past was told by the protagonist, Lu, in the first person; the present was told in the third person. The author also used different fonts to highlight which was which. I also grew to care about Lu a great deal despite her obvious flaws. I couldn't put this one down.

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