Cindy Crawford's Reviews > Hanging Hill

Hanging Hill by Mo Hayder
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's review
Jul 03, 2012

really liked it
Read from July 03 to 25, 2012

Hanging Hill is an intricately plotted mystery that has several twists and turns, including one at the end I never saw coming. Nothing and no one in the novel is what it seems at first. The two sisters who are the main characters have been estranged since childhood, and each has her own belief about the cause of their estrangement. Both are trying to hide something in their past, and they find that everything they thought they knew about others is wrong, or at least incomplete.

Zoe is now a polic detective, but still feels guilty for pushing her younger sister off the bed when they were children. Her guilt, and her belief that her parents no longer loved or trusted her, sent her on a mission to get away and travel around the world. To do that, she worked as a stripper to pay for the trip. Now that she's in the police, she can't let anyone know. But someone who knows her from her past turns up as she investigates a young girl's murder. When he turns up missing, Zoe doesn't really want to find him.

Sally believes she and Zoe went to different schools because Zoe was so much smarter than her, and has spent her life feeling helpless and stupid. That's only gotten worse since her divorce. When she gets the chance to earn more money by working as housekeeper for a porn king, she reluctantly takes the job. But what she finds out after going to work for him changes everything about her life, and Sally learns how far she will go to protect her daughter and herself.

The sisters meet up again as their lives intersect, but for most of the book they are separated and we see the pieces of the story unfold from each of their perspective. This is an excellent mystery with two well-developed characters who do things they are ashamed of doing, but who ultimately are heroic and courageous. The story ends with an intriguingly open plot line as the twists and turns continue until the final page.

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