Long Hill Home - Kathryn Pincus
Kelly Malloy is a wife, a mother and a successful lawyer whose world is shattered when she is brutally attacked while running along the banks of the Brandywine River. Chad McCloskey, a lonely teenage boy from a dysfunctional home, stumbles upon Kelly Malloy’s unconscious body immediately after the assault, and he is falsely accused of the crime after he tries to help her. Maria Hernandez, a young woman who emigrated illegally from Mexico, is reluctantly thrust into the role of witness to the crime, putting her in jeopardy of deportation only weeks before she is to give birth to her child.
Kelly, Chad and Maria all suffer tremendous adversity in the wake of the crime, and they ultimately discover that their lives and their fate are inextricably and permanently connected. Long Hill Home is a story of crime, mystery and the legal process—but it is also a story about the human condition, and how, regardless of vast differences in background or circumstances, all people strive for the same things—love, security and a fulfilling life.
So this book isn't very long, only 244 pages if you don't count the very interesting question and answer section at the back. Though it isn't long, it is jam packed with drama. I so very appreciate when a book doesn't screw around and give you a ton of back story that just isn't needed in the beginning but instead gets right to the meat of the story, that's what happens here. The quick and dirty of this book is that Kelly is brutally attacked on a morning run. She's drugged, beaten up, brutally raped, and seemingly left on her own, unconscious. She's found by Chad, who is coming from a highly dysfunctional family and he makes some pretty damn poor choices when he finds Kelly. Basically, anyone who has EVER seen an episode of Law & Order knows you don't mess with the original crime scene and you sure as hell don't move a body, even if you are hoping that means she's found faster. You could, you know, call 911 yourself. Enter Maria, an illegal from Mexico working nearby who happens to not only see Kelly get shot with the dart that drugged her but she later sees Chad leaving Kelly's body. Her fiance, Juan, is adamant that she absolutely not call the police no matter how awful she feels because they aren't here legally and he fears they'll be sent back to Mexico, or worse. Maria, being a good person, pretty much goes against what Juan says and doesn't understand that the police can track you down, there really isn't such a thing as an anonymous call anymore. So that sets it up.
But since every character's day is basically intertwined, we go back and forth in the different points of views as each of them try to come to grips with what happened to them, their role, and what their individual outcome is going to be in the search of justice for Kelly. I mean, it's really a story about how fate brings people into your lives in mysterious ways and how those people make an everlasting impact on you. I will say, shortly after Kelly is discovered and she's going through the process of evidence collection and examination at the hospital, I got a little angry at her. I KNOW she's the victim and we should be sympathetic towards her but her level of anger towards her husband is just awful. I mean, it's not like he did this to her. He's a guy, and guys are dumb, and he was clearly so upset seeing his wife in this condition and who even knows what is the right way to handle a situation? So I was getting a little irritated with her and it took me a long while of reading to come around to that character. I also felt bad for Chad. I mean, he isn't the brightest crayon in the box, and he made some really poor choices but at the heart, I felt like he means well. And his experience in jail is pretty horrific and I just felt terrible for this kid. Like you knew this was all 100% preventable and it makes you wonder how many others are in similar situations because of dumb decisions, not because of actual guilt?
The only complaint about the book is that some of the dialogue feels a little unnatural. I get what is being conveyed, but the way the conversations flow doesn't always sound like they way it would come out if you were having it in your living room, for instance. Does that make sense? It's definitely not a reason to not read the book, it was more of an after thought when I had finished and then re-read some sections.
Overall this was a really great book. It's basically a Law & Order episode, like an extended length episode, with so much information and knowledge of the legal system put to good use. I couldn't put it down and finished this in one evening. If you are a fan of crime dramas, you are definitely going to enjoy this one!
The book is available for purchase through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
About the Author:
Kathryn Pincus was raised in the New York metropolitan area, received her undergraduate degree (B.A., Magna Cum Laude) from the University of Delaware, and her law degree (J.D.) from the Georgetown University Law Center. Pincus honed her writing skills in her law practice, presenting complex factual and legal matters in clear, compelling, and persuasive writings. Since her “early retirement” from the practice of law, she has filled her days taking care of a busy household and family, supporting numerous charitable and community causes, and writing fiction.You can learn more about Kathryn through her website, and connect with her on Facebook and Goodreads.