Red Leaves

Published By: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Book Category: Fiction, Mystery & Detective

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Reviewed by Andrea Sisco

Nothing is ever as it seems, security is a slender thread broken when we first realize it doesn't really exist, and as Thomas H. Cook says in Red Leaves, "Family photos always lie."

Eric Moore is satisfied with his life, has nestled into the comfortable sameness of each day. So when his son Keith baby sits for eight-year-old Amy Giordano and she disappears, Eric's watches, stunned, as his life spirals out of control and smashes headlong into the reality of his present and his past.

As suspicion of Keith's involvement in Amy's disappearance grows, Eric and his wife Meredith continue to publicly support and believe in his innocence. Silently they are filled with a growing suspicion that their only child might have been involved.

Eric's suspicion leads him back to his own dysfunctional family where his father took them from considerable wealth that included private schools, to near bankruptcy, his mother committed suicide, his sister died of a brain tumor and his brother is a near-do-well alcoholic whose shocking addictions are just now coming to light.

The ending is unexpected but satisfying. Red Leaves is one man's determination to hold onto a fragile world of what he knows and what is his. It's a story that will leave you asking yourself, do you really ever know anyone, even yourself?

Armchair Interviews is a fan of Thomas H. Cook. His prose is direct and sparse with just the right amount of description; no more, no less. It contributes to a grand crime read.

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