book review: TETHERED

Author: Amy MacKinnon
ISBN: 978-0307409201
Pages: 272
Publisher: Three Rivers Press; 1 edition (August 11, 2009)
Category: mystery
Review source: publisher
Rating: 4.5/5

If I were a different woman, I could tell Mike everything. That life is complex and messy, filled with cruelties beyond even his experiences. I could try to explain what it is to live among the dead, to bear witness to their last struggles for life, fighting for one more breath even when their lives weren’t worth living at all. The way their vessels constricted within their eyes, their throats, the way a hand can be found still grasping toward another moment. Just one more. I’ve seen that yearning inside and out. Guts clenched, muscles flexed. I could describe the pearls of bruises that encircle lovely throats, the shredded spleens from shod feet, the slashes and entry wounds and multitude of crushed skulls that needed reinforcing for open caskets. I would tell Mike that never before or since have I witnessed such savagery as I did when Precious Doe was discovered.

I’ve already told author Amy MacKinnon via Twitter that I would feel honored to take a writing class with her. She’s an exquisite writer who arranges sentences with precision and care. TETHERED delves into the absolutely necessary, though some might feel morbid field of undertaking [of course if you were a fan, as I was, of Six Feet Under, you know a bit of the ins and outs, so to speak]. MacKinnon provides the pertinent details and visuals. In Clara Marsh, TETHERED has the ideal detached heroine who left her own painful childhood behind to pursue this unusual profession at a funeral home in Brockton, Mass. [her mother died in a car accident leaving her to be raised by an abusive grandmother]. She leads a quiet and solitary life and prefers it that way. She gardens and even has her own perfect secret garden that few people know about. Gardening is her escape. When a young girl, Trecie, begins hanging around the funeral home and then shows up in child pornography, Clara is reluctantly drawn into a case along with Detective Mike Sullivan. The case is also connected to an unidentified child [nicknamed Precious Doe] who died three years prior. The funeral home gave her a service and buried her. Signs lead to the Reverend and then even to Clara’s own boss who treats her as his daughter. Who really is the mastermind behind this child pornography ring and will it be too late to save Trecie from the same fate as poor Precious Doe? TETHERED is a clever thriller that keeps you turning pages and guessing to the end.

–review by Amy Steele

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  1. #1 by Julie P. on December 14, 2009 - 05:55

    Sounds terrific! Great review!

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