Monday, September 8, 2008

The Likeness, Part II

I’m loving The Likeness. Cassie, the undercover detective, has been placed in the shoes of a murder victim, Lexie, who Cassie looks like exactly. While her partners try to use all their powers to discover who Lexie really was on the outside, Cassie lives in an old mansion with Lexie’s four roommates. Having prepared through video clips and any and every fact the cops could give her, Cassie morphs into Lexie and becomes a part of the family, all the while trying to find her killer.

The roommates are very interesting characters – Abby, Daniel, Rafe and Justin. The five are unbelievably close. The mansion holds a mystery (why do all the local residents hate the group so much?), each roommate has a past they keep secret and Cassie has to discretely infiltrate the town, the roommate’s personalities and the house to discover whom Lexie was and why anyone would want her killed.

The book is very engaging, giving the reader hints along the way as to who possibly could be the killer. You fall in love with the roommates, but then you question their motives. It’s also sad to think that they believe their friend is still alive. While trying to remain professional, Cassie does fall into the group easily and starts to like them a lot. All the harder for her to possibly discover one or all of them is up to no good, or if anything, eventually have to tell them their friends is really dead. While it’s fiction, it does make me think about real undercover cops. How hard would it be to pretend to be someone else, especially within a dangerous situation? Always looking over your shoulder, hoping you don’t let on that you’re not who you say you are?

The author, Tana French, has a good way with language, including a lot of detail about the town, the characters, etc., but all in a very engaging way. Even if there’s not much dialogue for several pages, and you’re just sitting inside Cassie’s mind, the paragraphs are engaging and the pages go by quickly.

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