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After I'm Gone: A Novel by Laura…

After I'm Gone: A Novel (edition 2014)

by Laura Lippman

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6637322,890 (3.68)33
"When Felix Brewer meets Bernadette "Bambi" Gottschalk at a Valentine's Dance in 1959, he charms her with wild promises, some of which he actually keeps. Thanks to his lucrative--if not all legal--businesses, she and their three little girls live in luxury. But on the Fourth of July, 1976, Bambi's comfortable world implodes when Felix, newly convicted and facing prison, mysteriously vanishes. Though Bambi has no idea where her husband--or his money--might be, she suspects one woman does: his mistress, Julie. When Julie disappears ten years to the day that Felix went on the lam, everyone assumes she's left to join her old lover--until her remains are eventually found. Now, twenty-six years after Julie went missing, Roberto "Sandy" Sanchez, a retired Baltimore detective working cold cases for some extra cash, is investigating her murder. What he discovers is a tangled web stretching over three decades that connects five intriguing women. And at the center is the missing man Felix Brewer. Somewhere between the secrets and lies connecting past and present, Sandy will find the truth. And when he does, no one will ever be the same" --… (more)
Title:After I'm Gone: A Novel
Authors:Laura Lippman
Info:William Morrow (2014), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:Your library

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After I'm Gone by Laura Lippman

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Showing 1-5 of 73 (next | show all)
This is an intricate story about the women Felix Brewer leaves behind when he disappears in the 1970's to escape a jail sentence. The lives of his beautiful wife and three daughters are all profoundly affected by his defection, not least because of the sudden and devastating change to their lavish lifestyle. What happened to all the money? That's a mystery, but everyone assumes his beautiful mistress knows the answer - and almost ten years to the day after Felix goes, she disappears as well, seeming to confirm this theory. Of course everyone assumes she is living in luxury somewhere with Felix - but it turns out she never really left town. Her badly decomposed body is discovered, deep in the local woods, and now the question is - who killed her, when, and why? There are many possibilities due to her scandalous past as a stripper, her relationship with Felix, and of course the certainty of his bitter and jealous family that she stole all of their money.

I found this book to be compulsively readable, and each character - there were many - had a story line that I wanted to follow. I give it only four stars because, although I enjoyed the ride, once I got to the end, the solution to the mystery was unsatisfactory to me.

I am glad I discovered this writer, thanks to my book club, and I was pleased to note in the book jacket that she has written many other books. I look forward to more of her work. ( )
  AngeH | Jan 2, 2020 |
A recommendation for a novel full of mystery and intrigue.
Felix Brewer marries 17 year old "Bambi" Gottschalk after meeting her at a Valentine Dance with his two friends (future lawyer and Bail Bondsman). Felix runs the numbers game and eventually gets tried and sentenced to jail. He takes off and leaves Bambi, his 3 daughters and his Mistress holding the bag. The novel is told in flashbacks from the perspective of an investigator, his Mistress (Julie), his daughters, Bambi and family friends. Julie disappears 10 years after Felix and years later her body is found. Sandy, an investigator for the Baltimore Police, reopens the cold case and begins his investigation. We find out what happens to Felix's family after he disappears, what happens to his two best friends and their families and how it all ties together in the murder of Julie. A good read. Once I got into the book, I could not put it down. ( )
  Carlathelibrarian | Feb 5, 2019 |
(2) This was just OK for me. I really loved Lippman's 'What the Dead Know,' but this one and another (Wilde Lake) that I read were really nothing special. This is set in Baltimore which I am gathering is her usual locale and it jumps around in time - A small-time racketeer leaves his wife, 3 daughters, and his mistress and goes on the lam. His mistress turns up dead 10 years after his disappearance and the case is never solved - open to our story, a retired cop is working as a consultant on cold cases and he decides to work on the death of the mistress. This begins a series of reflections jumping around in time and in in the third person from the perspective of multiple different characters. I didn't guess the whodunnit which usually pleases me to be outsmarted; but sadly, I really didn't care.

The writing was pedestrian without significant emotion, characterization, atmosphere, nor psychological tension. Just really forgettable. Sandy, the widowed detective with the institutionalized estranged son, was the only vaguely interesting character. It seems he could possibly have a recurring role in her Tess something-or-other mystery series which were alluded to at the end.

Oh well. I think I am done with this author. Might do in a pinch at an airport though and for sure an easy-breezy reasonably engaging, but ultimately a bland novel. ( )
  jhowell | Jan 5, 2019 |
I thought this was a Tess Monaghan book and although she was in it, (kind of obliquely) I didn't like it as much as previous ones. ( )
  MikeDI | May 27, 2018 |
This was just okay for me. Maybe I shouldn't have listened to it but It just didn't grab me and keep my attention like I wanted. ( )
  MHanover10 | Feb 4, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Laura Lippmanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Emond, LindaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sasscer, AshleeCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Where you used to be, there is a whole in the world, which I find myself constantly walking around in the daytime, and falling in at night.
- Edna St. Vincent Millay
For David: To invert Noel Airman's caddish comment to Marjorie Morningstar, you've had the blame, now take the credit.
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They left at dusk, about an hour before the fireworks were scheduled, and by the time they were at the old toll bridge over the Susquehanna, Felix could see glimmers of light through the one tiny window, little celebrations everywhere.
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Dead is dead. Missing is gone. When Felix Brewer meets nineteen-year-old Bernadette "Bambi" Gottschalk at a Valentine's Day dance in 1959, he charms her with wild promises, some of which he actually keeps. Thanks to his lucrative - if not all legal - businesses, she and their three little girls live in luxury. But on the Fourth of July in 1976, Bambi's comfortable world implodes when Felix, facing prison, vanishes. Though Bambi has no idea where her husband - or his money - might be, she suspects one woman does: his devoted young mistress, Julie.
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