Monday, June 23, 2014

The Truth About The Harry Quebert Affair: A Novel by Joel Dicker

(Thank you to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

August 30, 1975: the day fifteen-year-old Nola Kellergan is glimpsed fleeing through the woods, never to be heard from again; the day Somerset, New Hampshire, lost its innocence.

Thirty-three years later, Marcus Goldman, a successful young novelist, visits Somerset to see his mentor, Harry Quebert, one of the country's most respected writers, and to find a cure for his writer's block as his publisher's deadline looms.  But Marcus's plans are violently upended when Harry is suddenly and sensationally implicated in the cold-case murder of Nola Kellergan - whom, he admits, he had an affair with.  As the national media convicts Harry, Marcus launches his own investigation, following a trail of clues through his mentor's books, the backwoods and isolated beaches of New Hampshire, and the hidden history of Somerset's citizens and the man they hold most dear.  To save Harry, his own writing career, and eventually even himself, Marcus must answer three questions, all of which are mysteriously connected: Who killed Nola Kellergan? What happened one misty morning in Somerset in the summer of 1975? And how do you write a book to save someone's life?

A char-topping worldwide phenomenon, with sales approaching a million copies in France alone and rights sold in more than thirty countries, The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair is a fast-paced, tightly plotted, cinematic literary thriller, and an ingenious book within a book, by a dazzling young writer.

my thoughts:

OMFG!  This book is crazy good! It is the type of book that shakes you awake and reminds you how much you enjoy reading a well written novel (the kind that is smart, engaging, and completely unputdownable).  I absolutely devoured HQ in a two days - I just could not get enough of it and would stay up til the wee hours reading as much as I could.  I'm going to admit that there was one huge aspect of the novel that I could do without and that was Harry's affair with Nola - she was a kid (fifteen!!) and it just didn't sit well with me.  I was reminded of Lolita (how could I not be) and the disgust I felt over that affair (even though I found the book to so well written).  Regardless, I plowed ahead and found myself enraptured by this book within a book.  I loved the writing advice that Harry gave to Marcus and the way the story reflected that advice.  I loved the idea of this author writing a book to absolve his mentor of murder.  And, I loved reading about writers and their writing.  This book was just fantastic!

HQ has plenty of drama, mystery, intrigue, and danger - it is a terrific whodunit, but a literary version of that type of novel.  Each character has their own story to tell (or at least their version of it) and they all fit together perfectly, like a jigsaw puzzle.  The mysteries that crop up are creepy and dark - some are completely unexpected.  There are tons of red herrings that threw me for a loop, which I loved.  I found myself disliking Harry and Marcus throughout the story, but couldn't help but want to find out what would happen to them (even though we know that Marcus writes another bestseller from the beginning).  This book is a crazy ride and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it.  I know that I didn't really expound on the plot lines, but I just couldn't - I didn't want to ruin any aspect of the novel for you.  This is a must-read book that you need to experience for your self. 

I would most definitely recommend Joel Dicker's, The Truth About The Harry Quebert Affair to fans of mystery/literary fiction - you will love this book! Be warned about the Lolita-esque nature of the plot - it is disturbing (how could it not be?!). 

Thank you to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book!


Bellezza said...

Oh, my friend, finally we differ on a book. Loathed this one...found it trite, W-A-Y too long, and over dramatized.
Plus, it didn't even ring true of America for me, and I could so feel the writer was under thirty.

But, that's just me, and I'll always be your friend. Who knew there could be book one of liked and the other didn't? It was bound to happen. xo

Nadia said...

Meredith, I can't believe we don't agree on this book - it finally happened! Ack! I definitely agree that you could tell the author was under 30, but I liked that - his writing was fresh. I'm just glad that you'll still stay my friend :) XO

Bellezza said...

But, of course! xoxo