The Heart to Kill by Dorothy Place
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This story.... these characters... it's a journey, that's for certain. For me it was the characters that made it so I'll focus there. As has happened from time to time, I don't fall in line with the norm so it didn't come as a surprise to me when I loathed some of the characters I feel like I was supposed to love and adored those that were written not so lovable.
Let's start with our protagonist. Sarah Wesser, jelly spined law student desperate for daddy's approval (even though daddy is a tyrant and a bully), returns home to her small town of Eight Mile Junction. She has been turned down for an internship that daddy all but arranged for her and starts working for the law firm who is defending the best friend she's blown off for the past few years, JoBeth. See, JoBeth hasn't been important to Sarah lately but now she's the key to a job so here we are.
JoBeth is the one character I can't come down on one side or the other on. She's a small town girl who only ever wanted to be a small town girl. She married her high school sweetheart, had a couple of kids and the rest is a small town happy ending. Only not for JoBeth. No, JoBeth killed those little darlings after Prince Charming dumped her, setting the stage for her old pal, Sarah, to ride in on daddy's coat tails and save her.
JoBeth's lawyers, John-Two and Al, both are firmly entrenched in the good ol boys club. John-Two is a chauvinistic blow hard who has no idea he's a chauvinistic blow hard. He serves his purpose in the story though.
Al is the brooding, handsome, mystery man. He bored me.
Now, all of that sounds like maybe I didn't love the book but you'd be wrong! I really did. I loved finding out the small town secrets and uncovering betrayal. My emotions swayed from sympathy to horror at the intricate story and I was invested in the outcome. I look forward to reading more of Dorothy Place's work.
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