The Girl Next Door

The Girl Next Door

A Novel

Large Print - 2015
Average Rating:
12
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In the waning months of the second World War, a group of children discover an earthen tunnel in their neighborhood. Throughout the summer of 1944--until one father forbids it--the subterranean space becomes their "secret garden," where the friends play games and tell stories. Six decades later, beneath a house on the same land, construction workers uncover a tin box containing two skeletal hands, one male and one female. As the discovery makes national news, the friends come together once again, to recall their days in the tunnel for the detective investigating the case. Is the truth buried among these aging friends and memories? This impromptu reunion causes long-simmering feelings to bubble to the surface. Mild-mannered Alan, stuck in a passionless marriage, begins flirting with Daphne, a glamorous widow who was once his teenage sweetheart. Michael, lonely after the death of his wife, considers contacting his estranged father, who sent Michael to live with an aunt after his mother vanished in 1944. Lewis begins remembering details about his Uncle James, an army private who once accompanied the children into the tunnels, and who later disappeared.
Publisher: Thorndike, Maine : Center Point Large Print, 2015
Edition: Center Point Large Print edition
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9781628994711
1628994711
Characteristics: 367 pages (large print) ; 23 cm

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j
jeffreyochsner
Jan 16, 2016

I finished this book, but it took effort. The overall plot was somewhat interesting, but the characters were not at all engaging. I recommend skipping this book and reading something else by this author.

n
nannerl
Nov 02, 2015

While a murder is central to the story, it's not really a mystery. It's more of a psychological examination of what it means to grow old, including relationships, memories, losses, and the long-term effects of abuse. The story gradually pulls you into the characters as more is revealed about each one. There are shocking moments and tender ones, extreme examples of selfishness and selflessness, and a jolly good ending.

a
Alleyopp
May 31, 2015

Sorry but it didn't catch my interest and I didn't finish it! Alley Opp

multcolib_susannel May 09, 2015

When a pair of severed hands are discovered buried in an underground tunnel, it affects the children who used to play there, now aging adults- in surprising ways.

g
Gramattie
Mar 13, 2015

good mystery. like the author. Prolific writer...look for another to try.

d
disgruntled
Jan 20, 2015

Boring, boring, boring. Can't believe this is really by Ruth Rendell. I don't know if I will finish it as I feel no interest in her characters.

s
sandralue
Jan 11, 2015

little bit creepy good author

t
titchieboyt
Nov 29, 2014

Ruth Rendell - one of her best reads so far. It was a short book and I read it in two nights. It started off in one theme and then changed to another, so it kept you guessing into which murder was actually going down. My best character was the the wife he left behind - Rendell was very strong descriptively in letting you see the wronged women and what lengths she would succumb to to get even. I can see a BBC crime drama happening here.
I'm reading another Rendell book now. I'm hooked for the time being.

r
readerpat
Nov 23, 2014

This was a very good unusual story. A man in his 70's leaves his wife of 55 years for his childhood sweetheart. A lot of different tales of the children who played in the tunnels after WW2. All of them brought together again 60 years later by the discovery of the box with the severed hands.

zullym Nov 16, 2014

One of the best books I have ever read. Immensely satisfying. Rendell's imagination has always been a marvel to me.

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