Sunday, April 10, 2022

Six top coming-of-age mysteries & thrillers

Amelia Kahaney is the author of All the Best Liars and The Brokenhearted series. Her short fiction has appeared in Best American Nonrequired Reading, One Story, and Crazyhorse, among other publications. She teaches writing in New York City, where she lives with her husband and son.

At CrimeReads Kahaney tagged "six books that have inspired and thrilled me, all of them featuring characters in the process of growing into their truest selves despite—or because of—dark forces urging them onward, whether to unravel a mystery, stash a body, avenge a wrong, or try to stop time before things move from bad to unthinkable." One title on the list:
Good Neighbors by Sarah Langan

The Maple Street Murders, we learn early on in this razor-sharp dissection of the dark underbelly of suburbia, were so sensational that they’ve been covered in countless articles and analyzed by academics. The action kicks off in a near-future summer swelter when a sinkhole opens near Maple Street, a seemingly perfect block in an upper-middle-class Long Island suburb. One of the kids on the block, Shelley Schroeder, falls in and vanishes. She’s either dead or maybe carried away by the water beneath to … somewhere. A chorus of narrators help us understand the vicious politics behind the block’s perfect façade, along with the buried trauma that continues to play out within the homes of two families. The neighborhood children are the opposite of their unhinged or ineffectual parents—they take heroic action when no one else will, determined to get Shelley back and expose the awful truth about what’s happened to her before Maple Street erupts into all-out war.
Read about another entry on the list.

The Page 69 Test: Good Neighbors.

My Book, The Movie: Good Neighbors.

--Marshal Zeringue