I Let You Go: A Novel by Clare Mackintosh (Berkley, $26.00, 384 pages; Penguin Publishing, $16.00, 400 pages)
British author Clare Mackintosh’s debut novel, I Let You Go, works at many levels. For those who enjoy intrigue there are multiple twists and turns right up to the end. Solid writing and character development should satisfy most readers who are simply interested in a good story.
In this story, a little boy named Jacob is tragically killed in a hit and run incident, and a persistent law enforcement officer, Kate, will not let the case go. Jenna Gray seeks refuge in a remote tourist spot named Penfach. She is ultimately apprehended and charged with the murder, but, from the start, things are never what they seem. Surprises abound throughout.
Roy, Kate’s partner and superior, sorts through the complex feelings he has for her as he struggles with the realities of his marriage and family. Jenna attempts to learn to trust again after a lifetime of heartache. Strangers regularly indulge in random acts of kindness. And still, evil lurks and must eventually be conquered.
Mackintosh chooses to consistently shift points of view and tells the story in both the third person and first person and through the eyes of multiple characters. This creates some choppiness in the narrative that would likely not be evident in a second or third novel, or coming from a more experienced novelist. Most readers should, however, be able to work through this without it affecting their enjoyment of what is otherwise a good suspense story.
A review copy was provided by the publisher.
I Let You Go is available in both hardbound and trade paperback editions.
Dave Moyer is a public school superintendent in Illinois and the author of Life and Life Only: A Novel.