Book Review Wednesday: Girls Like Us by Cristina Alger

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I've had "Girls Like Us" sitting in my Kindle for a few months. I'm not sure why I haven't read it until now but I'm very happy I did. This novel was published in July of this year so it's still relatively new but so addicting. I finished it within a few days, the majority of it being read on Sunday of this week. Once I got started, I simply couldn't stop.



Publisher's Summary

FBI Agent Nell Flynn hasn't been home in ten years. Nell and her father, Homicide Detective Martin Flynn, have never had much of a relationship. And Suffolk County will always be awash in memories of her mother, Marisol, who was brutally murdered when Nell was just seven.

When Martin Flynn dies in a motorcycle accident, Nell returns to the house she grew up in so that she can spread her father's ashes and close his estate. At the behest of her father's partner, Detective Lee Davis, Nell becomes involved in an investigation into the murders of two young women in Suffolk County. 


The further Nell digs, the more likely it seems to her that her father should be the prime suspect--and that his friends on the police force are covering his tracks. Plagued by doubts about her mother's murder--and her own role in exonerating her father in that case--Nell can't help but ask questions about who killed Ria Ruiz and Adriana Marques and why. But she may not like the answers she finds--not just about those she loves, but about herself.

My Thoughts

When I first started the book, I wasn't sure what to expect. Before actually reading I hadn't re-read the summary so everything was a shock, which is exactly what I wanted. 

Let's start at the beginning... Nell goes home to Long Island after her father dies and she gets more than she bargained for. The reader gets more than they bargained for as well because I didn't expect this to turn into more than a typical murder mystery. This is so much more than a domestic thriller, in so many ways. Aren't those the best books, though? The ones that start off as one thing and quickly become something else?

Throughout the book, you are taken on this journey with Nell as she is brought in on this serial killer case, but then you see everything start to unravel; Nell discovers that this isn't just a typical serial killer mystery but something deeper, with powerful men, sex workers, and a hidden secret about her father. 

Nell wavers off on her own to solve the case, without the help of anyone because she can't trust anyone besides herself. What she finds out about the place she's lived her entire life, the men she grew up with, and the murder of her mother is not what she expected and truthfully not what I expected either.

There were times throughout the book where I thought I knew what was going on or what would happen but then Alger pulled the rug out from under me. This book is a true journey and you're constantly rooting for Nell to figure things out. 

There are multiple endings to "Girls Like Us"; what I mean by that is that when you think the book is over and everything is calm, something else explosive happens. Then, after that ending, something else is revealed that ties everything up in a neat little bow. 

One of the things I liked most about this book was the setting. That definitely won't be true for everyone but I live in Queens, right on the border of Long Island and I'm there all the time/grew up going there frequently. While I'm not 100% sure if all the places mentioned in the book are real, a lot of the locations are and it was interesting to hear a story that takes place so close to my home. 

I loved the character development of Nell and everyone around her, especially because it made everything that happens so much more exciting and unexpected. As I mentioned before, I was truly addicted to this book. I was about 10 chapters in and then just finished the rest in one sitting over the weekend. I couldn't move until I knew how this story ended and I finished the book feeling totally satisfied. 

I'm confident in saying "Girls Like Us" is going to be one of my top books of the year and I highly advise you all to read it! 

xoxo
B

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