Twenty years ago, Tracy Crosswhite lost her sister Sarah. A young man was found guilty of her murder and sentenced to life in prison, but something about the story never seemed right to Tracy, and with the body never found, there was little to be done. She investigated on her own for years, pushing away everyone who cared about her in the process. She quit her job as a teacher to pursue a career as a detective, starting first in sex crimes and then moving over to homicide. When Sarah’s body is finally found, twenty years after her death, Tracy pushes to reopen the case.
I received my copy of My Sister’s Grave through Amazon’s Kindle First program. My first thoughts mostly centered around the cover and how gorgeous it is, and also the fact that it had been a really long time since I’d read a good mystery. I liked the book a lot more than my rating might imply, but I couldn’t give it more than three stars because of the two major problems I had with it.
First, it was really hard to get a sense of the story at the beginning with how much the narration jumped from present to past and back again. I understand that it was necessary for the reader to know how Tracy’s current life ties into what happened to her when she was younger, but every time I felt like I was getting to know Tracy, the narration jumped back twenty years and I kind of lost my footing.
The second major issue was with the pacing. Some chapters flew by as one thing happened right after another, and other chapters dragged as one conversation (or line of questioning) spanned several more pages that I felt it had to.
These two things added up to one sad conclusion for me: I thinkMy Sister’s Grave would make a better movie or miniseries than book. The plot is excellent. I didn’t expect the twist at the end. It just felt more like it belonged on a screen than in a book. And that’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy reading it, because I did, and I would recommend it to mystery fans.
Final rating: ★★★☆☆