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No One You Know by Michelle Richmond

No One You Know

by Michelle Richmond

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This is a mystery story, but almost nothing like a typical whodunit, one in which a woman solves the mystery of her older sister's death nearly 20 years before. The older sister was a budding math genius attending Stanford. Both sister's lives became defined by the event and especially by a teacher of the younger sister who took advantage of her friendship to write a true crime story that named a fellow grad student as guilty of the murder - the book became a sensation and launched the author's career, as well as seeming to destroy the life of the grad student her sister had been working with. The author of the crime story is something of a sleazeball, not entirely evident at first. This is well told and I don't want to spoil anything by further descriptions but those who want to know more can read other reader's reviews.

I was initially drawn to this because it is set in San Francisco and around the greater Bay area. I really enjoyed this book, but I think the math geekiness was a bit overdone, as well as a few other expositions and too much time spent with the creepy ex-teacher. The author plays fair with the reader and there is a satisfying conclusion to this. ( )
  RBeffa | Sep 12, 2018 |
This was the ideal vacation read. It was diverting, without requiring my undivided attention. In it, a woman looks for her sister's murderer, after the man who she thought was the culprit convinces her of his innocence. It's pretty much a standard thriller/mystery novel, but it's well-executed, well-written and well-plotted, which is enough to make it a stand-out in a very crowded field. Refreshingly, the conclusion didn't involve the protagonist putting herself into jeopardy, the killer being unnaturally evil or the person a lesser novelist would have chosen. No One You Know was fun, and while I suspect I'll have forgotten it in a few months, it was good enough for me to want to find a copy of the author's other book. ( )
1 vote RidgewayGirl | Jul 22, 2017 |
rabck from MyssCyn; Twenty years after her sister Lila's murder, Ellie's path crosses with the man accused of the crime. Then her sister's notebook with her math equations comes into Ellie possession. What if the true crime book got the alleged killer and facts wrong? Really good who-dun-it. I particularly liked some of the book writing references, such as "arbitrarily you decide to look back or look forward" and "we live our lives by the way of [a] story" ( )
  nancynova | Dec 24, 2015 |
Ellie's sister Lila was murdered when they were in college. This, the greatest tragedy of Ellie's life is paired with the greatest betrayal. After her sister's death, she spends a lot of time with one of her professors. She is shocked to learn that this man is using their heartfelt discussions to publish a true crime novel about Lila.

Even though she hates the man, Ellie has always accepted his book's conclusion that Lila's lover murdered her. That is until she meets the man herself ten years later. Could this man truly be innocent of Lila's murder? And if so, who really killed her?

I enjoyed this book but it was a little bit dry. I got a little annoyed with Ellie who seemed to be fine hanging out with her old professor who is extremely creepy and gross. I kept expecting her to get murdered or kidnapped herself. ( )
  Juva | Apr 2, 2015 |
I really enjoyed this book by Michelle Richmond, the second one of hers I have read. Ellie's sister Lila, a brilliant mathematician, died 20 years ago and author Andrew Thorpe wrote a book about the case naming the killer as Peter McConnell the man Lila was having a relationship with. Before he wrote this book Thorpe spent many hours talking to Ellie and learning about her, and Lila, and the family. Ellie trusted him at that time and saw him as a friend, to whom she could tell her secrets and as a result she was horrified when he told her he was going to turn all their converstions into a book. She begged him not to but he went ahead anyway and this was the first of several crime novels he wrote. Over time Ellie became defined by the book. She saw herself in the way she was portrayed in the book. Grief had blinded her to logic and she could not move on with her life. But when she meets Peter McConnell many years later and talks to him she begins to have doubts about Thorpe's version of the story. As Michelle writes every story is an invention of the author. He decides its beginning and end as if it could only exist one way. But Ellie believes there is another way to tell this story and wants to further investigate the murder so she can move on with her life. This book had so much to offer. There was not just the solving of the mystery. Along the way as Ellie works to solve the mystery of the murder and rediscover herself there are many valuable comments on the art of story wrting. There does seem to be an expectation that if a book is classed as non fiction it will turn out to be true. but Thorpe's motives were questionable. He was more concerned with making money. Ellie tells Thorpe he should have concentrataed on the minor characters too for as he had said in one of his lectures the minor characters have to be dstinct too so that when people have finished reading the book they can remember everyone who has crossed its pages. Thorpe gives Ellie information that leads her to meet with other of the characters in the book and as a result the murder can be solved. There are mathemataical elements in the story as well for Lila was a gifted mathematician but they do not overwhelm the book. They are interesting. Ellie becomes a coffee cupper and works in the coffee industry and I loved this part of the story too for I love my coffee. This was a great book. We live our lives by way of a story. There are many small narratives that make up our story and I loved the way Ellie was able to solve the murder so that it was no longer the major story of her life. She wa able to move on and and see herself in a different way, and trust people again. ( )
  kiwifortyniner | Oct 18, 2013 |
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There are three main aims that one can have in studying the truth. The first is to look for it and discover it. The second is to prove it when no one has discovered it. The third is to distinguish it from falsehood when one examines it. - Blaise Pascal, "On the Spirit of Geometry and the Art of Persuasion"
For my sisters, Monica and Misty
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When I found him at last, I had long given up the search.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385340133, Hardcover)

Michelle Richmond dazzled readers and critics alike with her luminous novel The Year of Fog. Now Richmond returns with an intensely emotional, multilayered family drama—a woman’s search for her sister’s killer that spirals into a journey of secrets, revelations, and damaged lives.

All her life Ellie Enderlin had been known as Lila’s sister. Until one day, without warning, the shape of their family changed forever. Twenty years ago, Lila, a top math student at Stanford, was murdered in a crime that was never solved. In the aftermath of her sister’s death, Ellie entrusted her most intimate feelings to a man who turned the story into a bestselling true crime book—a book that both devastated her family and identified one of Lila’s professors as the killer.

Decades later, two Americans meet in a remote village in Nicaragua. Ellie is now a professional coffee buyer, an inveterate traveler and incapable of trust. Peter is a ruined academic. And their meeting is not by chance. As rain beats down on the steaming rooftops of the village, Peter leaves Ellie with a gift—the notebook that Lila carried everywhere, a piece of evidence not found with her body. Stunned, Ellie will return home to San Francisco to explore the mysteries of Lila’s notebook, filled with mathematical equations, and begin a search that has been waiting for her all these years. It will lead her to a hundred-year-old mathematical puzzle, to a lover no one knew Lila had, to the motives and fate of the man who profited from their family’s anguish—and to the deepest secrets even sisters keep from each other. As she connects with people whose lives unknowingly swirled around her own, Ellie will confront a series of startling revelations—from the eloquent truths of numbers to confessions of love, pain and loss.

A novel about the stories and lies that strangers, lovers and families tell—and the secrets we keep even from ourselves—Michelle Richmond’s new novel is a work of astonishing depth and beauty, at once heartbreaking, provocative, and impossible to put down.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:10:19 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

"All her life Ellie Enderlin had been known as Lila's sister. Until the day Lila, a top math student at Stanford, was murdered, and the shape of their family changed forever. In the aftermath of her sister's death, Ellie entrusted her most intimate feelings to a man who turned the story into a best-selling true crime book - a book that devastated her family and identified one of Lila's colleagues as the killer." "Twenty years later, Ellie is now a professional coffee buyer, an inveterate traveler who is incapable of trust. In a chance meeting with the man accused of the crime, she comes into possession of the notebook filled with mathematical equations that Lila carried everywhere. Stunned, she will return home to San Francisco to explore the mysteries of Lila's notebook and begin a search that will lead her to a centuries-old mathematical puzzle, to the motives and fate of the man who profited from their family's anguish - and to the deepest secrets even sisters keep from each other. As she connects with people whose lives unknowingly intersected with her own, Ellie will confront a series of startling revelations - from the eloquent truths of numbers to confessions of love, pain, and loss."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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