I don’t know why but I always associate colder weather with mystery novels. Maybe it’s the idea of curling up on the couch in front of a roaring fire, hot chocolate in my favorite mug and book in hand. So with the beginning of November, I thought it would be the perfect time to review The Likeness by Tana French!
Before the start of the review, I do want to say that this is the second novel in a series called the Dublin Murder Squad. While you do not have to read the first novel in the series to understand what’s happening, I do recommend reading it simply because it’s very good. But reading it first is not needed.
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Super short summary:
- Detective Cassie Maddox’s next case involves going undercover as a recently deceased woman that looks exactly like her. As she falls further and further into her new world, she finds that secrets are everywhere and starts becoming emotionally attached to the case. Can she find the killer or will she eventually lose herself in her new identity?
Overall rating: 4.5/5
What will draw you in?
- Tana French is a legitimately talented writer. The book takes place in Dublin and she writes with such imagery that you can picture the Irish landscape perfectly. Every character is fully thought out and developed. You see how they seamlessly fit into the world that she has created. Reading her words is truly a great experience.
- The story takes you places that you wouldn’t expect. Mystery novels are great but a lot of them follow a similar formula. After reading a couple they start to become repetitive, predictable, and boring. This one has so many twists and turns that you never really know what’s going to happen. It’ll keep you on the edge of your seat!
- I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll keep this brief, but the ending is really good. It’s an interesting wrap-up and leaves you feeling not horrible. And that’s all I’m going to say about that!
What could have made it 5 stars?
- The premise is a bit unbelievable. While the idea of finding somebody dead who looks exactly like Cassie is supposed to draw you in, the chances of it actually happening are slim to none. You’ll have to suspend disbelief but that’s why they call it fiction!
- It gets long. It’s a long book to begin with, but about two-thirds into the novel there’s a good chunk that is exactly the same as the chunk before it. Nothing really happens and you’re just kind of waiting. Waiting and wanting to shake the main character and tell her to get on with it!
- At times there are too many details. While the writing is amazing, it is possible to have too much. There are a lot of characters in this particular story so trying to remember everything about everyone is impossible. Plus it only leads to confusion. While you need detail, at times less is more.
Tana French has quickly become one of my favorite authors and I already have her other novels sitting on my shelf! If you’re looking for a good book to spend your free time with, I highly recommend you check her out!
What is your favorite book genre?
Let me know in the comments below! I would love to hear about it!