Oakland University Alumni Association’s Literature to Film Club’s first meeting is right around the corner. I need to “carpe diem” and get reading Mystic River by Dennis Lehane!

From Publishers Weekly:
“Lehane ventures beyond his acclaimed private eye series with this emotionally wrenching crime drama about the effects of a savage killing on a tightly knit, blue-collar Boston neighborhood. Written with a sensitivity toward character that exceeds his previous efforts, the story tracks the friendship of three boys from a defining moment in their childhood, when 11-year-old Dave Boyle was abducted off the streets of East Buckingham and sexually molested by two men before managing to escape. Boyle, Jimmy Marcus and Sean Devine grow apart as the years pass, but a quarter century later they are thrust back together when Marcus’s 19-year-old daughter, Katie, is murdered in a local park. Marcus, a reformed master thief turned family man, goes through a period of intense grief, followed by a thirst for revenge. Devine, now a homicide cop assigned to the murder, tries to control his old friend while working to make sense of the baffling case, which involves turning over the past as much as it does sifting through new evidence. In time, Devine begins to suspect Boyle, a man of many ghoulish secrets who has led a double life ever since the molestation. Lehane’s story slams the reader with uncomfortable images, a beautifully rendered setting and an unnerving finale. With his sixth novel, the author has replaced the graphic descriptions of crime and violence found in his Patrick Kenzie-Angela Gennaro series (Prayers for Rain; Gone, Baby, Gone) with a more pensive, inward view of life’s dark corners. It’s a change that garners his themesAregret over life choices, the psychological imprints of childhood, personal and professional compromiseAa richer context and his characters a deeper exploration. Agent, Ann Rittenberg. (Feb. 6) Forecast: Given the excitement in-house at Morrow that this is Lehane’s breakthrough book, and the promotion they’re placing behind it, it stands an excellent chance of leaping straight onto the bestseller lists. A one-day laydown, $250,000 ad-promo and an 11-city author tour, plus a blurb from Michael Connelly designating Lehane as “the heir apparent,” should provide the groundwork for explosive sales. Rights have been sold in the U.K., France and Germany, and there will be a large-print edition as well as an audio from Harper Audio.”

From Booklist:
“This popular writer just keeps getting better and better, and this sharp, intelligent, suspenseful novel is sure to win him a lot of new fans. As children, Jimmy, Sean, and Dave have an odd kind of friendship, born more of geographical convenience than any actual affection for one another. A quarter-century later, Sean is a Boston police officer, Jimmy is an ex-con, and Dave is . . . well, let’s just say he’s got a lot of things to hide, including the truth behind something that happened a long time ago. When Jimmy’s daughter is murdered, the three former friends are thrown together again, but this time at least one of them apparently is bound for self-destruction. Lehane’s steadily growing reputation has been based, up until now, on his superlative Patrick Kenzie-Angie Gennaro series. Here he proves equally adept outside the series structure. Lehane is one of the small group of crime writers whose novels reveal a deep fascination with people, with motivation and inner turmoil and the subtle things that make characters walk off the page. As with the best crime writers, we rarely worry about solving a puzzle when we read Lehane. His people are too compelling for that. It’s time to stop talking about Lehane as an up-and-coming genre star and acknowledge that he is one of our best fiction writers period.” –David Pitt