For our Mystery Book Club selection for September, we read:
The Survivors by Jane Harper.
We had read two other books by this author in the group and all really liked them.
"Kieran Elliott's life changed forever on the day a reckless mistake led to devastating consequences.
The guilt that still haunts him resurfaces during a visit with his young family to the small coastal community he once called home.
Kieran's parents are struggling in a town where fortunes are forged by the sea. Between them all is his absent brother, Finn.
When a body is discovered on the beach, long-held secrets threaten to emerge. A sunken wreck, a missing girl, and questions that have never washed away."
A little more info: Kieran is now married and has a baby daughter. He has brought his family back to town to help his parents pack up the house and move: his father has a dementia and needs to be moved to a facility that can care for him, his mother to a smaller place close to where his father will be.
When Kieran was a teen ager, he got himself into a situation, that he knowingly put himself in danger. He almost drown. His brother and friend did drown. Many people in town, especially the family of the friend, blame Kieran.
When a college student, working in town for the summer, is found dead on the beach, many memories and accusations are brought back to life.
The story goes back and forth between the time of "the accident" many years ago and the current time. We read about the full story of things that happened in the past.
There are several promising suspects for the death of the college student. The author steers us to many different scenarios of what happened then and now.
The ending was a surprise to me and changed how I felt about the story actually.
Our book club met in person at a park this past week and talked about The Survivors. All liked the book. Some did not like how the story went back and forth in different time periods. Some said they liked The Dry and Memory Man better, but did like this book.
Our Mystery Book Club met, as I said, this past week in a park. First time since March 2020. We had nine people, about half of our full group. But that was pretty good seeing as how "The Thing" is still lurking here where we live.
This was an experiment. We still can't meet at the library. So after going over options with one member, she suggested a neighborhood park. It worked pretty well. The area I had hoped to claim, was being used by kids playing soccer or tennis. But we did claim another table under trees with two benches. Some people brought chairs. It was good to see everyone. Some did not attend the virtual meetings we had. Not everyone does virtual. We even had a new person. It was really hot! I bet it was still in the low 90's at 7 p.m. I was impressed and happy that that many people were brave enough to come out in the heat. Did I mention mosquitos? But all said they thought it was a good choice and will plan on attending next month. One person compared it to a scout troop from childhood, that lost their meeting place at one point. They also met in a park after that until a church offered for them to meet there.
The moral of the story was: If you don't keep the group together and allow it to disband all together for a period of time, it probably will not come back.