Review: The Fall by John Lescroart

Hey guys!

I’m so beyond excited because I woke up this morning to find my 15th follower. I’d say this is definitely a moment worthy of a happy dance. Yay! I’ve got mad love for you all! I just have one more thing to tell you guys. About a year ago, I married my husband. We decided that we would delay the honeymoon for a little while. Since a year meets the definition of ‘a little while,’ we decided to go on our honeymoon this week. I’ll definitely tell you all about it when we get back, but I’m not entirely sure that I’ll be able to post here as often this week. Next week, the book reviews will be back with a vengeance for sure. In the meantime,  I’ll leave you guys with one more review.

For this review, I read John Lescroart’s The Fall. This book is in the mystery/suspense category and was released in 2016. Basically, it’s one of the more recent releases that I’ve reviewed so far, which is friggin awesome because I love new and shiny things. This story is definitely made out of equal parts new and shiny. Lescroart kept me wanting to know more and more about the story, especially toward the second half of the book. Generally, I don’t find myself drawn to suspense fiction because I find it too predictable or cliche. While this book had potential for lameness of this variety, Lescroart totally saved it from this mundane fate and made it pretty awesome. He kind of makes me want to give mystery/suspense another chance actually. I always love when authors do that! I initially bought this book at a gift shop on a whim. The story looked pretty interesting, and I figured I’d give it a shot. Then, 3 days later when I’d completely devoured this book, I decided that my decision to give The Fall a chance was a pretty solid one.

In Lescroart’s The Fall, a teenage foster child named Anlya Paulson plummets to her death in San Francisco. Her body falls and crashes into a woman’s BMW, causing a chaotic chain of events that cause the police to wonder what caused her death – was it an accident, suicide, or possibly murder? The investigation quickly leada authorities to conclude that the cause of death must be murder. As investigators are racing to find the perpetrator of this crime, they set their sights on one man named Greg, a children’s advocate and school teacher. We learn about Greg’s relationship to the victim and all of Anlya’s other friends and family members. When we learn about other potential suspects in The Fall, the story seemed to read a bit like a spiderweb of motive and opportunity, resulting in dizziness and excitement among other things.

“‘At this time, the defendant was working as a court-appointed special advocate, or CASA, helping to represent children in foster care in their administrative dealings with the courts. In this role, he was assigned to Anlya’s twin brother, Max. This is how he met Anlya, as the advocate for her brother; in other words, he was in a position of trust. The evidence will show that he betrayed that trust in the most vile manner possible.'”

– The Fall

So then, Greg’s trial is ready to start and we meet his attorney, Rebecca Hardy. With the advice of her expert-lawyer father, Dismas Hardy, Rebecca nervously launches herself into her first murder trial. While she tries to piece together conflicting evidence and multiple suspects’ role in this heinous crime, Rebecca finds out that this murder was much more complex than she initially thought.

This book was insanely exciting from start to finish. As great as the action was in the first half of the story, the second half seemed to spiral into a chaotic funnel. I loved every bit of it. The story was full of plot twists and the momentum only increased in every plot detail that I thought I had figured out. I was simply in awe of Lescroart’s artful chops. So what did I love about this book? I loved the character development in this book and felt an immediate connection to both Rebecca and Max, Anlya’s twin brother. I found both of their struggles relatable. Max’s quest for strength and belonging resonated with me especially clearly. I also loved the pace of the book – I was practically shaking in my boots in anticipation. So, what was I not so in love with in this book? One aspect of this story that I was not so interested in was the names given to some of the characters. I found it difficult to remember such supremely dull characters for more than a few minutes and almost every police officer in the book had the same dull personality. Bleh. Of course, there were exceptions to the above complaint about cookie-cutter characters, such as the lawyers and the characters who were friends and family members of the victim, Anlya. Apart from this tiny grievance, the story kept me largely interested and way excited to find out how the crime really happened. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves page-turners or legal suspense fiction.

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