Donna Tartt tells the story of how a family tragedy can have a far reaching effect on the remaining family members. The main character is Harriet, a young girl whose brother was found murdered in her backyard when she is only a baby. To make matters worse, the killer was never found. Harriet's mother never fully recovers from the loss and spends most of her time in a drug-induced sleep. Harriet's father separates from the mother and has little influence in Harriet's life. Most of Harriet's upbringing is the responsibility of the family's maid, her grandmother, and her great-aunts.
As Harriet becomes older she becomes more and more obsessed with her brother's murder. A chance remark by the maid convinces Harriet that she knows who the killer is, and she intends to make him pay.
Even though the novel is over six hundred pages long, I never got bored with it. It kept me reading right up to the end.
Four of Five Stars