Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Review: Girls Like Us by Cristina Alger

Title: Girls Like Us
Author: Cristina Alger
Published: July 2019, G.P. Putnam's Sons
Format: Hardcover, 276 pages
Source: Publisher via GetRed PR

From the celebrated and bestselling author of The Banker's Wife, worlds collide when an FBI agent investigates a string of grisly murders on Long Island that raises the impossible question: What happens when the primary suspect is your father?

FBI Agent Nell Flynn hasn't been home in ten years. Nell and her father, Homicide Detective Martin Flynn, have never had much of a relationship. And Suffolk County will always be awash in memories of her mother, Marisol, who was brutally murdered when Nell was just seven.

When Martin Flynn dies in a motorcycle accident, Nell returns to the house she grew up in so that she can spread her father's ashes and close his estate. At the behest of her father's partner, Detective Lee Davis, Nell becomes involved in an investigation into the murders of two young women in Suffolk County. The further Nell digs, the more likely it seems to her that her father should be the prime suspect--and that his friends on the police force are covering his tracks. Plagued by doubts about her mother's murder--and her own role in exonerating her father in that case--Nell can't help but ask questions about who killed Ria Ruiz and Adriana Marques and why. But she may not like the answers she finds--not just about those she loves, but about herself.

My thoughts: Last year I read The Banker's Wife by Cristina Alger and absolutely loved it. And I knew after finishing that book that I would be reading more of this author. I was ecstatic to learn that not only did she have another book coming out this summer, but that it was set in Suffolk County, Long Island, where I grew up and now live once again. 

I loved this book for so many different reasons. I loved that I was familiar with the setting - to me, I love when I know the locale of the book because it just makes it more identifiable and I can really visualize where things are happening. I also loved that the author clearly shows the disparity between the classes within Suffolk County. She shows the differences between the hard-working, year-round residents of those that live in the Hamptons and the uber rich and wealthy upper-class residents who only come out to the houses in the summer or when they are entertaining. This distinction is not only made between money  for the "haves" and the "have-nots" but also to the way the law operates.

Nell Flynn absolutely made this book. I loved that here we have a strong, complex character - yet, she was NOT unreliable. This is one time when we could completely rely on our main character. Yes, she was flawed, but I loved her all the more for it. She has issues, and I am so bummed that we only get this one book with her. Nell is the type of character you want more of...hint, hint Cristina!!! Nell is willing to do anything to get what she wants. Here, she has to work through her own demons to help solve these cases...and it's not quite as easy as she is hoping.

I also appreciated the fact that these cases that Nell finds herself involved in were based on true cases, both of which I remember from the news. I have just started to dabble into true crime, so knowing that a local author is using her own backyard as the basis for her books is so cool. Of course, that also means I need to now go find more about these cases, too!

I loved this book...I liked how at the beginning it was a little slower, so that you could meet Nell, learn about her and get a good feel for what was happening in her hometown to cause her to stick around for a while. Then after that is all set, the pace picks up and stays pretty steady, keeping you hooked and wanting to keep reading to find out ultimately what is going on. I loved this combination and found myself totally immersed in both the writing and the story this way.

I cannot wait to see what comes next from Cristina Alger - I've loved her last two books! In the meantime, I did just pick up one of her earlier books, The Darlings, and I'm looking forward to reading that one soon. Have you read all her books yet? Have you read this one yet? If not I highly recommend adding it to your summer reading's so good!



  1. Kristin, it sounds like this author's work really appeals to you. Terrific, enthusiastic review!

  2. I saw this at Target yesterday and wondered about it!


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