"Politically savvy, cleverly plotted...the kind of book that invites the ravenous language of binge reading: compulsive, propulsive, addictive."--New York Times Book Review
For fans of Jane Harper’s The Dry or Gillian Flynn’s Sharp Objects, a searing debut crime novel set in the Australian outback, where the grief and guilt surrounding an unsolved disappearance still haunt a small farming community…and will ultimately lead to a reckoning.
The tiny outback town of Nannine lies in the harsh red interior of Australia. Once a thriving center of stockyards and sheep stations, years of punishing drought have petrified the land and Nannine has been whittled down to no more than a stoplight, a couple bars, and a police station. And it has another, more sinister claim to fame: the still-unsolved disappearance of young Evelyn McCreery nineteen years ago.
Mina McCreery’s life has been defined by the intense public interest in her sister’s case—which is still a hot topic in true-crime chat rooms and on social media. Now an anxious and reclusive adult, Mina lives alone on her family’s sunbaked destocked sheep farm.
Enter Lane Holland, a young private investigator who dropped out of the police academy to earn a living cracking cold cases. Before she died, Mina’s mother funded a million-dollar reward for anyone who could explain how Evelyn vanished from her bed in the family’s farmhouse. The lure of cash has only increased public obsession with Evelyn and Mina—but yielded no answers.
Lane wins Mina’s trust when some of his more unconventional methods show promise. But Lane also has darker motivations, and his obsession with the search will ultimately risk both their lives—and yield shocking results.
Compulsively readable, with an unforgettable setting and cast of characters, WAKE is a powerful, unsparing story of how trauma ripples outward when people’s private tragedies become public property, and how it’s never too late for the truth to come out.
When nine-year-old Evie McCreery, the victim at the center of Australian author Burr's uneven debut, vanished from her home in Nannine, "a barely populated town in Central New South Wales," her disappearance became a national story. Two decades later, it remains the subject of speculation online, including from those subscribing to the theory known by the acronym WAKE (Wednesday Addams Killed Evie), a reference to the resemblance of Mina, Evie's twin sister, to the actress who portrayed that character on screen. The mystery is revived by PI Lane Holland, who specializes in investigating unsolved disappearances in the hopes of reaping the reward money, which he uses to help support his younger sister. Mina initially resists Lane's outreach to her, but her attitude changes after he makes significant progress on another case that has also been unresolved for years. Burr neatly doles out the Holland siblings' dark backstory and effectively shows her tortured leads alternating between hope for closure and resignation, but the final reveal isn't fully satisfying. This familiar tale of an investigator probing a cold case who's concealing his own secrets breaks no new ground.
A very good read.
Good read, not crazy about the ending
Interesting twists. Suspenseful till the end. Enjoyed