Thursday, May 1, 2014

Come Home

Come Home could benefit from some tartness.  Lisa Scottoline doesn't dwell in the same sub-genre as Laura Lippman but her legal thrillers have always had a bit of South Philly girlfriend addy-tood.  This novel, however, features a Main Line pediatrician and a Lifetime Movie tone.  I love seeing authors stretch, and (although it may surprise some to hear me say this), I don't assume that "chick lit" is bad.  Come Home, however, is, well, not very good chick-lit.  Three years after her divorce, Jill Farrow opens the door on a rainy night to find her former stepdaughter, distraught over her father's death.  Abby is convinced her father was murdered, the police are not.  Sounds like the perfect Scottoline set-up right?  Well, the solution turns on a rather dull (and accurately portrayed) bit of regulatory law, and Scottoline does manage to make that interesting.  Where she fails in in her usual strength - character.  As I mentioned last year, Scottoline's longest running character, Judy Carrier and Mary DiNunzio feel so real that I not only know them, I have been either one - or both - of them.  Jill Farrow, her fiancé, her daughter and former stepdaughters - none of them feel real.  They're the sort of flat characters that trap talented actresses in RomCom Purgatory, cute and earnest and ultimately unbelievable.  Think Twice reminded me how much I like Lisa Scottoline's Rosato & Associates books.  Come Home has taught me to think twice if Scottoline's protagonist isn't a lawyer.

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