>> Friday, February 18, 2011
Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry
Publisher: Crown Publishers
Publication Date: 2011 (This book will be available next Tuesday February 22, 2011)
Source: Copy provided by publisher
The Short Version:
While taking a ferry across Lake Champlain, Troy Chance sees what she thinks is a child falling off a ferry going the other direction and without thinking further jumps in after him and her life changes in ways she never expects.
Why I Read It:
I’d been hearing promising things about this debut thriller and when I was offered the chance to receive a copy I didn’t hesitate because I enjoy finding new suspense/thriller authors.
When Troy impulsively jumps off the ferry to rescue what she’s not even positive is a child in the water she has no idea what she’s in for. A small boy who only speaks French and who may have been purposely tossed into the lake soon wraps himself around Troy’s free spirited independent heart.
Living in Lake Placid, New York and making her living as a free lance writer, Troy decides to track down the boy’s family. Because she’s not sure whether or not his wealthy father had anything to do with it, she’s cautious at first.
Her attachment to the child leads her into pursuing leads to the mystery both with and without the assistance of the Canadian and American authorities. Troy’s search for the answer to who took the boy from his father and why takes many detours and becomes life threatening before it’s over.
I’m hesitant to say more than that because it might give away parts of the story that are better experienced as they are revealed by the author.
I think this was a promising debut and I will be watching for Sara J. Henry’s next book. The suspense built through both predictable and unpredictable events as the story played out. There was a lot to like about the book and only a few minor quibbles.
I liked Troy. She was smart with the usual amateur detective type character’s tendencies to not be smart at just the wrong time, but that’s the nature of this kind of story. The boy’s father was a wonderful blend of charming, attractive and maybe just enough untrustworthy to keep suspicion pointed his direction. I enjoyed the secondary characters, in particular the Canadian detective who both believes and not quite trusts Troy.
I had several theories as to how this one would play out and changed my mind a few times along the way. I enjoy mysteries that make me do that. There were a few points when an aside turned into a little too long or detailed, but despite those the story kept moving and making me wonder what would happen next.
I have to say that one thing that bugged me was the main character’s name. To me Troy Chance sounds like some 1950’s era action movie actor rather than a female writer. That’s my problem and not a problem with the book and I’ll still be keeping an eye out for this author’s next novel.