I thought this novel was brilliant. It captured the realism of how black people were treated in the nineteen forties and the scars it left behind forty years later. But more than that, it was the basis of a true story and Stout recreated the tragedy that happened to a young George Stinney Junior.
The characters were well executed,they were consistent and realistic, I thought. They were diverse and varied in manner. Sometimes the characters of books can morph into one big character where they think and feel alike. Not in this novel. Linus was the awkward teenage boy, scared to do something wrong and in the wrong place at the wrong time, his uncle; scarred by demons of his past that have affected his family is a very interesting character, he acts brave but admits he's shaking, he wants to know the truth but unsure of himself. The sheriff and his son are quite similar and while the sheriff was a good guy - he made a huge mistake. Cody was not a likeable man nor was T.J.
The novel truly was a mystery novel with the right amount of tension and intrigue. I was constantly guessing and putting the book down for a moment to understand what a new piece of information meant. It was captivating.
The only issue with this book, I think, was the rather abrupt ending. We did find out what happened though it was mostly speculative and there wasn't a large piece of justice served for the misconduct of Linus Bragg's death, but I suppose that's realistic.
A very good read, one I recommend to mystery readers everywhere.
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