This being the first novel I've read by Linda Barnes makes me anxious to see what else I have missed by this author. The novel is told primarily from the main character Em Moore's point of view. She is faced with going forward with the biography she and her recently deceased partner Teddy Blake are writing. The only problem is that Em is extremely afraid of leaving her home. Linda Barnes ability to capture her fear in the beginning of the book had me hooked and interested in finding out more about this Em Moore.
After Teddy's death by car accident, Em is completely shut off from any source of life. Without any real friends or love interests (besides Teddy), she's left to her own devices to navigate through a world she feels is no longer safe or as she left it. Melodramatic I know, but it works well. Em builds up the courage to interview Garrett Malcom in order to complete the biography. She is totally smitten by his Hollywood good looks and charm but there's so much more she needs to learn about him and the people who are in his life.
Barnes does a great job at setting up the character of Em that almost too suddenly I knew there was something wrong with this woman. Besides the obvious fact that she's almost agoraphobic, there is just something totally nutso about her. I find the biggest mystery of the novel is figuring out our heroine and what is going on with all the people surrounding her.
One other thing I appreciated in this novel was the use of police reports and tape recorded conversations between Teddy and the interviewee. Without these elements, the story would not have worked as a mystery. The recorded conversations also bring to life characters other than Em allowing them to be just as real as her. The juxtaposition of one of Shakespeare's most famous works and this novel work so well together.
In conclusion, I enjoyed this read and can't wait to read more by Linda Barnes.***