Wednesday, October 3, 2012

And When She Was Good

And When She Was Good
Laura Lipman

Amazon Blurb -

When Hector Lewis told his daughter that she had a nothing face, it was just another bit of tossed-off cruelty from a man who specialized in harsh words and harsher deeds. But twenty years later, Heloise considers it a blessing to be a person who knows how to avoid attention. In the comfortable suburb where she lives, she's just a mom, the youngish widow with a forgettable job who somehow never misses a soccer game or a school play. In the state capitol, she's the redheaded lobbyist with a good cause and a mediocre track record.
But in discreet hotel rooms throughout the area, she's the woman of your dreams—if you can afford her hourly fee.
For more than a decade, Heloise has believed she is safe. She has created a rigidly compartmentalized life, maintaining no real friendships, trusting few confidantes. Only now her secret life, a life she was forced to build after the legitimate world turned its back on her, is under siege. Her once oblivious accountant is asking loaded questions. Her longtime protector is hinting at new, mysterious dangers. Her employees can't be trusted. One county over, another so-called suburban madam has been found dead in her car, a suicide. Or is it?
Nothing is as it seems as Heloise faces a midlife crisis with much higher stakes than most will ever know.
And then she learns that her son's father might be released from prison, which is problematic because he doesn't know he has a son. The killer and former pimp also doesn't realize that he's serving a life sentence because Heloise betrayed him. But he's clearly beginning to suspect that Heloise has been holding something back all these years.
With no formal education, no real family, and no friends, Heloise has to remake her life—again. Disappearing will be the easy part. She's done it before and she can do it again. A new name and a new place aren't hard to come by if you know the right people. The trick will be living long enough to start a new life.

"You have a nothing face."  So says Helen Lewis' father Hector to her, and so begins the abuse  by her father.  A frustrated nothing who takes it out on Helen, her mother is more relieved that her child is now the benefactor of his rage so she does nothing to protect her.

Helen knows she must get out, sadly her choice leads to what happens to most young girls that have no where to go.  But Helen is smart and she watches, hoarding away what she see's learning for when she is on her own, and on her own she becomes successful in an upper middle class neighborhood. 

After her pimp is jailed for murder, she must hide her pregnancy from him since he is the father.  Making up the excuse that her mother is dying and she has to go home so that she won't have to visit him, she gives birth and then uses his help to start her own call girl business.  He never knows about his son, she visits him regularly and he takes his cut from Helen, now known as Heloise.

In a neighboring town, there is the murder of a suburban madam.  Is there a crazed killer on the loose, or is this a well thought out hit?  Helen has to be very careful, her son and her life depend on it.

I loved this book!  It was just fantastic.  Helen was a fantastic character.  I was going right to the last few pages which had me gasping and on the edge of my seat!

4 1/2 cannolis


  1. I haven't tried LauraL but this one sounds fantastic and its a stand alone right? I am going to try Girl in the Green Raincoat first.

    BTW - I started Psychos but couldn't get into it at all :-( will try again.

    1. Yes this is a stand alone.

      Psychos was a mix with some being better than others. The first one almost had me putting it down, that's how much I didn't like it, so I just moved on to the next.

  2. Oh my this sounds just heart wrenching! I don't know if I can take it!

    1. It really wasn't bad as far as violent, I really liked it a lot :)


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