"The Likeness" by Tana French

Last December, I read Tana French’s debut novel In The Woods and thought it was incredible.  Her follow up, the second in the Dublin Murder Squad Series does not disappoint.  This book picks up a couple months or so from where the last book left off. Here, we follow Cassie Maddox (the partner from the first book) as she is trying to make peace in her life following all that went wrong in the first book.  Out of nowhere whatever little peace she has is shattered.  Her detective boyfriend calls her frantically, asking her to come to a Murder Crime scene – and come in disguise.  A woman’s body, stabbed,  has been found in an abandoned cottage way out in the country.  She and Cassie could have passed for twins…..  and the woman’s identification names her Lexie Madison – the name Cassie invented when she worked Undercover a few years back.  Who is this woman?  How could she have that name?  Why was killed?  Was the killer really aiming for Cassie?  It seems the best option to crack the case would be for Cassie to go back undercover, taking over the dead woman’s life and see what she can find….   Can she keep herself separate from Lexie?  Is she walking right into the killer’s outstretched arms?  Can she do this?

You do not need to have read the first book to understand what is happening here.  The aftereffects of the case are explained neatly enough for the new reader’s comprehension, but the details of that case have no direct bearing on this new situation.  I loved the opportunity to get to know Cassie better here….  and loved how the lines between her and Lexie started to blur.  Everything is so brilliantly constructed, that you have no idea where the investigation is headed…. Then when the truths started to unravel – I have to say this, I’m sorry – but I was so engrossed in what was happening, I could not even put the book down to go to the bathroom. And that isn’t even the end of the book.  So good.

Book Three, Faithful Place, was released July 2010 – and is now listed on my TBR list…. as well as Book Four, Broken Harbour due this August.  I think I’m a little bit in love with this series!

The Likeness                                  http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=sara023-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=0143115626&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr                                http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=sara023-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=0143113496&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr
by Tana French
Penguin Books, 2008
466 pages
Source:  Purchased New
Series: Dublin Murder Squad #2

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6 thoughts on “"The Likeness" by Tana French

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  1. I love French's lyrical style. However, I'm always a little disappointed with the way in which she seems to wrap up the cases. I've read Faithful Place and In the Woods but was hesitant with The Likeness because I've seen other bad reviews. I think I'm definitely going to attempt it. I had no idea that another book was coming out this summer! Thanks for sharing!


  2. I flat out loved this book the first time I read it, but thought the ending dragged out the second time. The first time I read it, there was a short para near the end that discussed another aspect of “Likeness” that added a new dimension to In the Woods. It's blink and you miss it but was an example of Woods' great characterizations, I thought. After the second read, I also appreciated the complexity of the title, The Likeness, which has more layers than, say, “The Resemblance” (which doesn't sound nearly as good, but would still be an apt description.) I really was drawn to the life in that academic coterie.


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