Published by Hachette Books on January 5th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Thrillers, Suspense, Psychological
eARC provided by Hatchette Books
Hailed as "a novel so extraordinary that it reminded me of reading Stieg Larsson for the very first time" (Sunday Times, UK), a near-million copy bestseller in Europe--centered on a tragic plane crash in the Alps and the mystery surrounding its only survivor, an infant girl.
A night flight from Istanbul bound for Paris, filled with 169 holiday travelers, plummets into the Swiss Alps. The sole survivor is a three-month-old girl--thrown from the plane onto the snowy mountainside before fire rages through the aircraft. But two infants were on board. Is the miracle baby Lyse-Rose or Emilie? Both families step forward to claim the child--one poor, one powerful, wealthy, and dangerous.
Filled with delicious twists and riveting psychological suspense, After the Crash is an electrifying story of a two-decade mystery, secret love, and murder--perfect for the readers who swarmed to Stieg Larsson, Gone Girl, and The Girl on the Train.
I have been thinking about this review for 3 days now. I am still conflicted about this book. A plane crashes into a mountain in the middle of the night. Everyone is killed instantly, except a female infant who was thrown from the plane right before impact. The baby is claimed right away by the surviving Grandparents and living sibling. The problem is that there were 2 babies on the plane, both girls about the same age. The baby has no identifying marks, and this is pre-dna testing, so it’s anyone’s guess who the child actually belongs to. A custody battle ensues and it all comes down to one little piece of evidence. The story starts off with the child, now 18 interacting with her sibling. She is given a book written by a private detective who has been trying to find definitive proof of who’s the child actually is for 18 years. The detective was hired by the family that lost the custody battle.
There were so many facets to this story it is almost crazy that it all fit into less than 400 pages. First there is the mystery of the child’s parentage; it is hard to take sides but eventually I did. Then there is the detective, whose story is detailed enough to seem plausible. The detective gets to know both families and he definitely crosses a line here and there throughout the investigation. There are two possible surviving siblings; one female and one male. They both go through hell trying to come to terms with which child survived and what it actually means for them. Then there is the child herself. She goes on some sort of mission after reading the detective’s memoir, but did she reach the right conclusion?
As you can imagine, we get many POVs in this story. The author is careful to keep everyone in the dark long enough to make them all a little crazy. I cannot even imagine what each person must have felt being in each situation. The mystery was killing me slowly throughout the book. Each time I thought I had it figured out the author slowly tore apart my theory. I doubt anyone reading this book will be able to guess the truth. Even half way through the story I had no idea. Then even after the DNA results were revealed, I was still guessing. This was a very complex mystery that other authors should take notes from.
There was a bit of extra drama that I didn’t think was really necessary. It almost got to a point where I forgot we were searching for an identity, so to me it was a bit excessive. There were layers and layers to this story. Each character had so much baggage and the author laid it all. This left me disliking everyone for one reason or another. I kept on reading because I had to find out who the child belong to.
I found the ending a bit unsatisfying. I got the answer I was looking for, but the ending felt like it was so extreme. Kinda like the rest of the story, it was unbelievable. I think this is the sort of story you have to read for yourself.