Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Last Winter of Dani Lancing by P.D. Viner

by:  P.D. Viner
published by:  Crown
publish date:  October 8, 2013

Twenty years ago, college student Dani Lancing was kidnapped and brutally murdered. The killer was never found, and the case has long gone cold. Her parents, Patty and Jim, were utterly devastated, their marriage destroyed. While Jim fell apart, Patty was consumed by the unsolved case. She keeps contact with Tom, Dani's childhood sweetheart, who has become a detective intent on solving murders like Dani's. When he finds a lead that seems ironclad, he brings Patty in on it. After years of dead ends, her obsession is rekindled, and she will do anything for revenge, even become a killer herself-dragging her whole family into the nightmare once again, as lies and secrets are uncovered.

The first thing I want to address about this book is that it told out of chronological order.  I went back and forth on this issue.  At times I could understand the author's technique.  Other time, I found it really frustrating because I was clueless as to what point in time we were hearing about.  Ultimately, I don't know if it was the most effective way to tell this story.

Secondly, I listened to the audiobook.  This was the most bizarre audiobook I've listened to...EVER.  It had an ensemble cast and it wasn't just read, it was acted out.  It also had a lot of sound effects which were a little off putting especially when I was driving.  There was a lot of screaming, crying and wailing throughout this book and it was all LOUD.  I didn't find it to be particularly appealing.  There was also this ethereal moaning sort of ghosty like "Whoa!" that would float up whenever something significant would happen that got to be sort of hilarious.  I found myself "whoa-oo-aa-oo-aa" along with it after awhile.  Would I recommend listening to the audiobook?  Probably not for serious audiobook listeners, but maybe for amusement sake.

Overall, I thought the story was just ok.  I was kind of disappointed because I was expecting something different than Dani's crazy mother running like a lunatic most of the book.  That's what it felt like most of the time.  It felt like being taken along on this wild meltdown of Patty and I didn't care for that.  I guess I would have rathered more of the story told from a different point of view.  

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