Hush Hush by Laura Lippman

hush hushHush Hush by Laura Lippman

William Morrow, February 2015

Disclosure: I received a review copy from the publisher.

Hush Hush is the latest installment in the Tess Monaghan PI series by Laura Lippman. Some of the characters overlap from the standalone books as well, so it feels like I’ve  been in the fictional world for quite a long time since I’ve read a huge chunk of her books. That being said, I have to say my main enjoyment of the book comes from returning to characters of whom I’m very fond.

The plot centers around a mother who was found guilty by reason of temporary insanity in the suffocation death of her daughter in a hot car ten years before the book takes place. Melisandre Dawes returns from life abroad after being in a mental institution, and she is financing a documentary about her life and her family. Her older daughters, now teenagers, are understandably conflicted about seeing their mother again. Their father has sole custody of them, and he is recently remarried with a young baby.

The storyline about the bad mother resonates with Tess because she is a mother to a three year old daughter now, and the echoes in her life as well as in the lives of other characters deepens my appreciation for the book. I was more surprised by the emotional depth of this story than I was about learning Melisandre’s story. She was a mysterious character, but she didn’t hold my interest throughout the entire story. I think this book works best for people who’ve already read books in the series.


9 thoughts on “Hush Hush by Laura Lippman

  1. I’ve never read Lippmann and would like to and have the first three books in the series. But thanks for answering my one burning question and that is does this book stand alone well??? Thanks Rebecca.

    • Lippman has so many standalones to choose from, and I really like the ones I’ve read so far (she started with this PI series and then branched out). And she brings up The Wire in lots of the recent books too 🙂

  2. Fine review as ever, Rebecca. There are some books like that, that are best enjoyed if one’s got a background in a series. I’m glad you found that this one had lots of good points, even if the main character (Melisandre) wasn’t really compelling for you.

    • It wasn’t a bad book, but it’s not my favorite Lippman, if that makes sense. She’s written some really, really good books, and this isn’t one of them for me. I’m reading so much this long winter that I’ve grown pickier, I think.

  3. I have read #1 in this series and have a few more that follow. I wasn’t terribly impressed with that first one, but I know this author gets great reviews for both her series books and her standalone books. So I will try more of them eventually.

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