After I’m Gone-Laura Lippmann

After I’m Gone
Laura Lippmann
Morrow, Feb 11 2014, $26.99
ISBN: 9780062083395

On July 4, 1976, Felix Brewer kisses his wife Bambi like he did the first time when they met at a high school dance in 1959. They are to meet later, but instead abetted by his mistress former stripper at one of his clubs Juliet Romero Saxony, Felix flees the country. He left to avoid a prison sentence for his illegal activities that kept him, his wife, their three daughters (Rachael, Linda and Michelle) and his mistress living luxurious lifestyles. Julie takes Felix to a private plane but instead of joining him in flight he leaves her behind.

On July 3, 1986, Julie disappears with those who knew of her relationship with still missing Felix assuming she finally joined her lover wherever he hid. In 2001 in Baltimore’s Leakin Park, Julie’s body is found. Over a decade later, retired police detective widower Sandy Sanchez, who works cold cases, investigates the murder of Julie and the related vanishing of Felix.

While Tess Monaghan takes a deserved respite (except for a last second appearance), Laura Lippmann writes a strong mystery that hooks the reader with a need to know what happened to Felix while learning how his vanishing act impacted the five females he loved and cherished. Character-driven, the gripping storyline rotates between past and present, as Felix wonders if he really escaped incarceration.

Harriet Klausner

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