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Laura Lippman's After I'm Gone is a masterful, mysterious tale. A must!

Laura, lovely
Laura, lovely
Author's collection

A stolen kiss on adance floor.
A diamond earring left behind in the liningof a purse.
A receipt filed away at the bottom of a shoebox.
The smallest acts, the simplest gestures, the most casual choices and random decisions, can change a life, seal a fate . . . or solve a murder.
In After I’m Gone (William Morrow $26.99), multiple award-winning best-selling author Laura Lippman composes a man’s escape from justice, a woman’s violent demise, another woman’s devastation and redemption, a family’s sorrow and healing, and an elaborate mystery connecting them across generations in beautifully conceived minor moments that resonate through the characters’ lives like a distant, remembered song.
With characteristic authenticity and emotional depth, Lippman brings to life a captivating cast whose intersecting lives and fates are revealed and unraveled with both exacting detail and sweeping range.When Felix Brewer meets nineteen-year-old Bernadette "Bambi" Gottschalk at a Valentine's Dance in 1959, he charms her with wild promises, some of which he actually keeps. Thanks to his lucrative—if not all legal—businesses, she and their three little girls, Linda, Rachel and Michelle, live a life of suburban privilege. But on the Fourth of July, 1976, their comfortable world implodes when Felix, newly convicted and facing prison, mysteriously vanishes.
Though Bambi has no idea where her husband—or all of his money-might be—she suspects one woman does: his devoted young mistress, Julie. A protégé of Felix in one of his business fronts, Julie falls hard for her boss—hard enough to help him escape justice when the time comes. When she disappears ten years to the day that Felix went on the lam, everyone assumes she's finally left to join him—until her remains are found in a secluded wooded park, an unstamped passport and a single diamond stud earring in her purse.
Now, 26 years after Julie went missing, Roberto "Sandy" Sanchez, a retired Baltimore detective working cold cases for some extra cash, decides to investigate her murder. As he delves into the complex history, hidden motivations, secret suspicions, and unspoken loyalties between the Brewer women, he discovers a shoebox full of receipts for items sold years ago. But one of those items is not like the others and it is the key to understanding all the sorrow and fear that Bambi Brewer has carried with her for almost three decades. When Sandy brings the details together for them all for the first time, what they learn—about Felix, Julie’s murder, and each other—stuns them all.
In a novel that will have readers guessing until the very last page, Laura Lippman demonstrates once again how rich characters are created and true storytelling is done, from the smallest detail to grandest design.

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