REVIEW: WILDE LAKE, BY LAURA LIPPMAN

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They seemed like royalty, the family of State’s Attorney Andrew Jackson Brant, when they settled in Columbia, Maryland. But like many people elevated in the minds of those around them, they had feet of clay. And many secrets from the past. Would those secrets ultimately destroy them?

When Luisa (Lu) Brant took over the office of State’s Attorney, she looked up to her father, his legacy, and how he had done the job. Her first murder case after her election would take her back to the past, some secrets, and some stories that turned out to be untrue. Would Lu find out how dark that past was, and would it be too late? Would it change how she lived her life afterwards?

Wilde Lake was a page-turning story that was more about family than legal cases. How Lu, as a widow, is raising her twins as a single mother in her childhood home, while juggling motherhood and career. The story of what happened to Lu’s mother, and which would only begin to unfold many years later, would have a deep impact on Lu…and on her brother A.J., as well as her father, because of how they kept the secret.

But the biggest secrets of all would be about a fateful night in 1979 and how the actions of some, spurred on by the perceived actions of others, would turn into an event that would inform all of their lives decades later.

Can the secrets and lies be justified? Could the flawed memories of those who participated be counted on in the present? I could not stop reading, as, like other books by this author, I was immersed in the stories and the secrets…until the very end. 5 stars.

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