The Necklace by Matt Witten
Release Date - September 7, 2021
I was intrigued when I heard that Matt Witten's novel has been optioned for a film with Leonardo DiCaprio attached as producer of The Necklace. Not everyone may realize what a kind-hearted man he is on sets, and he's been a favorite actor since What's Eating Gilbert Grape.
So that aside, I started reading, and it took absolutely no time to get me hooked. As much as I wanted not to keep mentally casting Kate Winslet as Susan Lentigo, I couldn't help it. Her performance in Mare of Easttown made me feel she was a perfect choice for both young and old Susan. And, I wouldn't hate seeing the chemistry between the two back on a screen.
Two decades earlier, Susan Lentigo was a happily married mom to a young daughter. When she's asked to take a shift at the diner where she works, she makes arrangements with her mom to get Amy after school and watch her until after dinner. Only Susan never gets her mom's message that she has to back out and can't get Amy after all, and Amy vanishes.
Amy's body is found just over the border in Vermont, and a man confesses to the young child's rape and murder. This is why Susan is about to take a cross-country trek to North Dakota to witness his execution 20 years later. The problem is that Susan comes across new evidence that has her questioning if the man about to get executed really committed the crime. Susan will do anything to make sure her daughter's killer doesn't walk free, even if it means racing against the clock when everything possible that could go wrong goes wrong.
Talk about a breathtaking read. I was completely hooked from the first page. Not only was the story gripping, but the setting is very familiar. I always love a familiar setting. My mom is in Alzheimer's care in Granville, so I am in that area regularly. It made it easy to place the crime scene and area where Susan and her husband lived.
This novel may be tough to beat for September reading. It's a mesmerizing read and one that I'm very thankful was brought to my attention.