The Likeness by Tana French

The Likeness (Dublin Murder Squad, #2)The Likeness by Tana French
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was a brilliant and emotionally intense story. I liked it much better than Tana French’s first novel, In the Woods. (I had also enjoyed that novel, but to me, this second in the series had a much more satisfying ending, as well as a plot that was lots of fun, and a completely loveable and relatable main character.)
I related deeply to Cassie as a character, which is interesting, given the whole premise of this novel. I actually can’t remember another character in fiction who I have identified so strongly with. And that’s not to say that I feel that I am exactly like Cassie, but I think, has more to do perhaps with the fact that Cassie herself is so fully developed. Tana French has a unique gift in that she is both an actor and author. She has a talent for character development, as well as for setting the emotional tone of different scenes in her stories.
As referenced above, I also thought the plot of The Likeness was a whole lot of fun. And again, French’s talents make what could seem like a rather improbable basis for a story seem believable.
French’s writing style is beautiful, often poetic. She also conveys clearly a sense of what it is to be Irish.
I also appreciated that the ending of The Likeness was hopeful and redemptive. French’s first novel described the collapse of the main character and his relationships. It left me feeling depressed. The Likeness picked up where In The Woods left off, and showed how, as one of the main characters states, “Time works so hard for us.”
Finally, I listened to The Likeness as an audiobook, and the reading, by Heather O’Neill, was fantastic. I’m not a big fan of audiobooks in general, but in this case, I felt that the audio added immensely to the emotional impact and sense of place in the novel.
I will definitely be reading more by Tana French.

View all my reviews

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