The Fate of Katherine Carr by Thomas H. Cook
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I wouldn't call this a mystery book. It is a story within a story. The first is the story of George Gates, whose 8 year old son was kidnapped and murdered. His young wife also died and now he is alone. He was a travel journalist who specialized in places where people disappeared, but after the tragedy, he became a reporter for a small newspaper. A retired detective got him involved in the disappearance of a poet, Katherine Carr who had previously been assalted and left for dead.
So many people have reviewed this that I am not going to add much more to the plot. It is essentially a novel about dealing with tragic deaths, especially with violence. I think the main question posed, after the immediate, "Why?" is "Why do they get by with it?" In an earlier generation it would be the question that the man screams at God with his fists raised. Why does a serial killer die in his bed of old age when his victims died too young and too horribly?
I figured out where the book by the poet was going fairly early and thought that it was a novel ending and fairly satisfying although many would not feel that way. It is a story about people who can't believe in God trying to reconcile the world they find themselves in when faced with atrocities.
I listened to an audiobook for this title and I would not recommend it. There are two different narrations; George Gates and Katherine Carr. Because both deal with abduction and tragedy, it is easy to forget who is speaking and I found myself having to backtrack when I was in the mindset of the wrong character. Other than that, I found it very well written, if disturbing. When dealing with violent deaths the usual practice for most people is to try to keep the details OUT of our minds, but this book dwells on them quite a bit and that was disturbing at times. It is not for the squemish.
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