Lady in the Lake

Lady in the Lake

Book - 2019
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"Laura Lippman returns with a new stand-alone novel about a middle aged housewife turned aspiring reporter Maddie Schwartz, who is determined to solve the murder of a forgotten young woman in order to make her own reputation."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, NY : William Morrow, 2019.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780062390011
Branch Call Number: FIC Lippm
Characteristics: 340 p. ; 24 cm.

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r
Roundcat
Jun 29, 2020

This Laura Lippman novel was different in structure than her other work; but giving us the viewpoint of various other characters fills in the effect Maddie has on those surrounding her, as well as broadening our perception of her character as we see others' viewpoints of her. She is beautiful, intelligent and resentful of the role she thinks she has to play. She uses her beauty and her ability to "read" others, particularly men, in order to get them to do what she needs. At first she needs to get married and be a "perfect" housewife and mother, learning all the little tricks to being a hostess to her husband's friends. She really doesn't have women friends of her own. They don't fit into the picture she is creating. When she finally decides she's had enough of watching her husband pander to other men in order to advance his career and social standing, she leaves without giving it enough thought as to how she's going to survive without an income. She solves this by hiding her wedding rings, and claiming the insurance, then selling them; and so she meets Ferdy Platt, a black policeman. Their relationship is mostly using one another for sex, but he falls in love with her. It takes her awhile to figure out what she wants to do with all the time she now has; but she decides, through an accident, to capitalize on having found a dead girl, who has been missing from a family in her parents' neighborhood. She decides to become a reporter. She goes about this in the methodical way she approaches most things--taking advantage of opportunities, working hard, speaking up for herself, and realizing, when the men surrounding her are not going to give her a break, that she'll have to circumvent them. She is really not a sympathetic character. This is more a study in how a woman of the 50s and 60s managed to get ahead without much interest in how her tactics affected the lives of others. Lippman's power as a writer brings Maddie, her setting, and tangential characters to life. I would not say this was an enjoyable book; but it is instructive.

n
Newmommy09
Feb 29, 2020

I really enjoyed the first 3/4 of this book and loved the storytelling and the writing. But then I was ready to wrap this one up. Maddie's constant social climbing gets tedious, and the end of the book was "meh."

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0007548100dmw
Feb 20, 2020

Returned to library. Couldn't get into book.
There are too many good books to read rather than waste time on one you can't get into.

a
ArbolVia
Feb 08, 2020

This was the first time I read Laura Lippman and I really liked both her writing & this novel. I liked the Maddie character, although she was shallow in personality. Her sex life seems a little far-fetched, but since she had lived a less than satisfying marriage for so long I gave this aspect a wide berth. I enjoyed going back to the 60s time. And even some of the 50s as described in her earlier life. I have not been to Baltimore so all of the city detail I found helpful and added to the storyline. Based on how much I liked Lippman‘s writing, I also read her very first novel, Baltimore Blues, which I found less interesting and more difficult to get through.

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NedSu
Oct 22, 2019

Naturally, I like anything Laura Lippman writes. She still has the great imagination and a fine sense of both time and space, but this novel is a little muddled. She uses a multi character technique of voices, not just the principal character. Each new voice is tied, at least tangentially, to the main character. In effect, it chops up the narrative, so that no rhythm can be reached in reading the plot. Eventually, I came to an understanding with it. I was interested in all the characters and they were sometimes quite venal but I still cared for them. The epilogue at the end showed what effect one event had on multiple characters over the years.

As an aside, in 1966 I was stationed in nearby Washington D.C. and thought Lippman did a good job of replicating the atmosphere of that era. I especially remember Spiro Agnew's campaign for governor. I do not think she foists modern mores on a bygone era. I find her accounts believable even for that era.

m
maipenrai
Sep 16, 2019

A pretty good mystery with a surprise ending, but the multiple narrators is distracting and unnecessary. I really did not need to know what peripheral characters were thinking. Since there is only one narrator of the audiobook, it is difficult at first to figure out who is speaking.. This might be easier with a book that hopefully names the narrator as voices switch. Kristi & Abby Tabby

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laphampeak
Aug 21, 2019

Although well written, I expected more follow through. At times there seemed to be asides and filler material. The story of "How did she die?" carried throughout but without big twists, turns, or surprises.

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athena14
Aug 20, 2019

Maddie is shallow and self-absorbed, not the personality for a reporter. As for her sex life, no way in 60s Baltimore.

debwalker Jun 18, 2019

The revered New York Times bestselling author returns with a novel set in 1960s Baltimore that combines modern psychological insights with elements of classic noir, about a middle-aged housewife turned aspiring reporter who pursues the murder of a forgotten young woman.

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PineSisken02
Jun 11, 2020

“It was Halloween, of all things, that broke her.”

p
PineSisken02
Jun 11, 2020

“...— she felt herself falling in love. Not with the city so much as the possibility of a new start, at an age when she had thought her life would basically be over.”

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CatOverman
Feb 12, 2020

Whit?

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maggiepcurtis
Sep 11, 2019

Jenna Bush

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