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What She Left

3.01  ·  Rating details ·  2,213 ratings  ·  440 reviews
Alice Salmon
young, smart, ambitious -
with her whole life ahead of her.
Until the night she mysteriously drowns.

Nobody knows how or why.

But Alice left a few clues:
her diary, texts, emails, and presence on social media

Alice is gone but fragments of the life she led remain - and in them might lie the answer to what really happened to her - if only someone can piece it all
...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 8th 2015 by Penguin (first published 2015)
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Josephine Yea, it becomes more interesting as you continue to read it. I also had points where I wanted to stop reading because it definitely does have boring…moreYea, it becomes more interesting as you continue to read it. I also had points where I wanted to stop reading because it definitely does have boring parts, but as you get closer to the end it certainly does get better :)(less)
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3.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,213 ratings  ·  440 reviews


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Elaine
Dec 02, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I gave up on this one at 40%, just couldn’t go on any more. 25 year old Alice Salmon’s body was found floating in a river and her story is told “mostly” by University Professor Jeremy Cooke who tries to rebuild an image of her life by collecting her digital footprint. At the start of the story we don’t know the connection between Jeremy and Alice, although as the book goes on it does become apparent.

The whole story is told by way of emails, blog posts, texts etcetera from many different viewpoin
...more
Estefani
Jan 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 Stars

Thank you, NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for providing this copy in exchange for an honest review.

Review also on Fiction Jungle

I just find it incredibly pleasing when an author can so easily pull you in and yet deliberately not show you an absolute picture of a story. In a intricate way we discover what happened to ordinary Alice, who she surrounded herself with, how we are led to believe, it was mysterious death.

You shouldn’t hesitate on picking this one up because of its format
...more
Figgy
Who is Alice Salmon?
Student. Journalist. Daughter.
Lover of late nights, hater of deadlines.

That girl who drowned last year.

Gone doesn’t mean forgotten.
Everyone’s life leaves a trace behind.
But it’s never the whole story.


We’ll all have to be strong for them now: your lovely dad with his mad sweaters and that way he has of saying Al-ice, pausing between the ‘Al’ and the ‘ice’ as if he’s asking a question, and your mum, your gorgeous mum, a one woman dynamo, who you’re an absolute spitting image
...more
Susan
Apr 05, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel takes as its starting point the death of a young woman, called Alice Salmon. It demonstrates the way people communicate now via the internet; feeling utterly free to comment about the most personal events. In fact, the book virtually begins with tweets, speculating on the fact that police are down by the river and, gradually, we learn that the body found is that of Alice. Alice was a student at Southampton University and had recently began working in the media, as a journalist in loca ...more
Liz Barnsley
An absolutely brilliantly constructed story, compelling and actually really quite scary when you can see, all in one go, how much of our lives are just out there in the ether for people to see. The little things and the big, the people who know you and who do not but will speak as if they do, even the smallest of details that you would not think twice about. When Alice Salmon dies, Jeremy Cook starts putting together her life and death through a series of interviews, online information and perso ...more
Christine
Nov 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alice Salmon is a twenty five year old journalist. She dies. We follow various accounts of her, some first person diary entries, others are twitter posts, phone messages, online forum chatter, letters and all kinds of other third party accounts of her. We hear from her lovers, her friends and family. Her old professor, Jeremy Cook takes it upon himself to investigate what happened to Alice. He looks at her online presence and accounts of her from the real world. Over the course of the book, with ...more
Tracy Fenton
Some books are easy to review and the words come naturally... unfortunately not this one... I feel like I need a thesaurus just to start the opening sentence.! Firstly the primary narrator Cooke (Cock) made my skin crawl.. the most unpleasant, predatory slimy man with a pompous attitude didn't help matters much. All the characters were pretty unlikeable in their own unique way, and whilst in other books I have actually enjoyed reading about characters I despised... this one is not one of them. A ...more
Rosie
This novel is written quite differently: telling the story of Alice Salmon's life and death through diary entries, blogs, twitter posts, emails, letters, text messages and police interviews. One of the main characters in the book, Professor Cooke, is putting together all these pieces of information to publish an account of Alice's life. He comes across as being obsessed with Alice and is a little creepy and quite clearly crossing the line between appropriate teacher-student relationships.

The fi
...more
Esil
Nov 11, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an opportunity to read an advance copy of What She Left. Closer to 2 1/2 stars. I was attracted to the concept of this book, but I didn't feel particularly engaged as I read it. Alice Salmon -- a 25 year old journalist -- drowns in a river in Southampton on a night of heavy drinking. What She Left is meant to be a reconstruction of Alice's life and death as seen through the writings of many people in Alice's life -- including tweets, emails, diaries, ...more
Susan
Apr 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel takes as its starting point the death of a young woman, called Alice Salmon. It demonstrates the way people communicate now via the internet; feeling utterly free to comment about the most personal events. In fact, the book virtually begins with tweets, speculating on the fact that police are down by the river and, gradually, we learn that the body found is that of Alice. Alice was a student at Southampton University and had recently began working in the media, as a journalist in loca ...more
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
This review appears on Happy Indulgence! Check it out for more reviews!

What an absolutely frustrating book with deplorable characters! My emotions ran high while reading What She Left, a thriller where a girl has died drowned in a river. What results is a media storm, social media commentary and the vested interest of Professor Jeremy Cooke who collects all mentions of Alice’s life and death, which frankly, wasn’t that interesting.

I do enjoy a story told using creative mediums, and this one fea
...more
Thomas
Jan 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways, uk-crime
This book opens with the discovery of the body of Alice Salmon, a 25 year old journalist. The police treat her death as suspicious, not ruling out suicide, murder or accidental death. The narrator, a professor at the Southampton university that she attended, decides to reconstruct her life from her online posts, text messages, photos, friends posts, diary entries, etc. The book has a slow start and is somewhat difficult to follow, as it switches back and forth between the various entries and let ...more
Nikki "The Crazie Betty" V.
This was a strange read. Interesting. But strange nonetheless. The entire book is told through news articles, tweets, texts, voicemails, and letters. There is absolutely no narrator due to us only getting this story through ad hoc modes of media. The, I guess you call him, MC (Old Cookie) is an anthropology professor who makes it his goal to recreate Alice's life before her death, and unearth previously unknown facts and secrets about her and those close to her. (this is not a spoiler, it is the ...more
Deborah
Apr 05, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I almost put this book down several times and struggled with it on MANY levels. So I’ll be blunt.

1. Quite frankly Alice’s life wasn’t all that interesting.
2. Given the first point, Professor Cooke’s interest in Alice’s life is incredibly creepy. His interest becomes obsessive and it’s almost difficult to know how much of his narrative to believe given the way he justifies his interest. As for their ‘relationship’, I would have preferred suppositions about Alice’s parentage to be true.
3. The b
...more
Bill Kupersmith
When I give a low rating to a book that some of my GR friends loved I fear appearing an awkward & nit-picking churl (nits of course being something you’d expect churls to have a lot of) or an old pedant, especially when the nits involve health-care or sailing. But it’s even more discomforting when I want to promote a book to field-marshal status that some of my discerning friends gave but a star or two @ most. But that’s my response to What She Left. Some Amazon Kindle books have this great ...more
Judy Collins
A special thank you to Simon & Schuster and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

T. R. Richmond delivers a clever contemporary psychological suspense, WHAT SHE LEFT, centered around social media—love, obsession, and revenge. What happened to Alice Salmon? A mysterious, dark, and intriguing debut.

Alice Salmon is a journalist. Twenty- five years old, her body is found washed up on the riverbank in Southampton, south of London—creating a media frenzy. A music fan, bookworm,
...more
Malia
Apr 30, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
I so wanted to like this, and be sucked in the way other reviewers were, unfortunately, I was rather disappointed:-(
I usually like multiple POVs, and I don't even mind jumping around in time, as long it's made clear, but I just felt that was taken a step too far in WHAT SHE LEFT. I read a lot of crime fiction, and can generally follow the flow of a story quite well, but I felt rather confused with this book at multiple points, particularly the ending.
The premise is quite clever, and I give Richm
...more
Liz Barnsley
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Teaser Review: Full review to come upon publication.

An absolutely brilliantly constructed story, compelling and actually really quite scary when you can see, all in one go, how much of our lives are just out there in the ether for people to see. The little things and the big, the people who know you and who do not but will speak as if they do, even the smallest of details that you would not think twice about. When Alice Salmon dies, Jeremy Cook starts putting together her life and death through
...more
Shelleyrae at Book'd Out

I think the premise of What She Left is good and I was excited by the idea of the epistolary format, yet somehow the story didn't quite live up to it's potential for me. There seemed to be more focus on Professor Cooke, Alice's former tutor, than on Alice and her life. I also struggled with the scattered timeline and fairly slow pace
Carlene Inspired
When I finished this book and logged into Goodreads to leave my review, I was shocked to see the low rating. I almost wondered if I had somehow built the book up to be more than it was, but after taking a day away from it I can say, without a doubt, this was a phenomenal book. Easily a 4.5 star book for me, but it may just be one of those books that you either love or you hate.

Alice has passed away, she is gone, and her death may not be solved any time soon. Her family and friends, while in mour
...more
Laura
May 13, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What She Left is a very original crime novel. Recommended to fans of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl and Jane Shemilt’s Daughter, but still unique enough to be almost in a field of it’s own.

The book is made up entirely of letters, diary entries, essays, police interview transcripts, social media exchanges, emails, newspaper articles, blog posts, etc. It isn’t your typical dialogue and narration. Because of this, you feel like you’re a part of the investigation and being given clues piece by piece,
...more
Renita D'Silva
Dec 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I LOVED this wonderful book - the assembling of a life via fragments, traces left behind. The writing is so very beautiful, and each voice unique, the author getting each narrator's gender, youthful slang, the quirks and abbreviations of twitter and text messaging absolutely right. I even warmed to Old Cookie despite everything. Authentic, clever, original.
Belinda
Mar 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alice Salmon, 25, talented and beautiful, has drowned in the lake in her university town Southampton. Drunk and with cocaine in her blood, her story captures the imagination of the nation's media. Is she a cautionary tale of what happens when girls go wild in a binge-drinking culture? Or did something more sinister cause the inebriated Alice to fall into the freezing cold water in the middle of a dark winter's night?

In the aftermath of her death, Alice's former professor Jeremy Cooke, an anthrop
...more
Paul Pessolano
“What She Left” by T. R. Richmond, published by Simon & Schuster.

Category – Fiction/Literature Publication Date – January, 2016

Alice Salmon is a journalist that is held in high esteem with her friends and colleagues. One night after some serious drinking Alice is found dead. The police, having little to go on, cannot decide if this is a suicide, an accident, or a murder.

Now comes the difficult part. The story of Alice is told through a recreation of the text messages, blogs, news articles, a
...more
S.A. Partridge
Aug 31, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Be careful what you reveal online. Anyone could be watching. When we die we leave something of ourselves behind: Facebook profiles, Twitter feeds, diaries, photographs. When journalist Alice Salmon dies, university professor Jeremy Cooke endeavours to recreate her life through these fragments and what emerges is a portrait of a woman who was a beloved friend and daughter, a campaigner for women’s rights, a fearless journalist. But soon the obituaries and platitudes thin and a deeper, more sinist ...more
Evy
Oct 31, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-read
I received the book as a first read giveway. I was really looking forward to read this book as I found the story of rebuilding a person by the footprints and effects they leave around themselves really intriguing.

I absolutely loved the meaning of the book that highlighted how much one life can affect other people's lives around them, whether they were in close relations or driffted apart. I absolutely loved the format the story was written in, giving it a realistic vibe, but I did not enjoy the
...more
Fictionophile
Alice Salmon, a budding journalist, went clubbing with three friends one cold February night and died alone by drowning in the River Dane in Southampton. Her demise went unseen by anyone who would admit to it, and ironically unobserved by close circuit cameras.
Alice was someone I would have liked to have met. Obsessed with truth, quotations, literature, and love. She drank to excess and loved to excess. She suffered from episodes of depression. She was over-analytical, loved Jane Austen, had gre
...more
Gloria
Oct 21, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I would like to thank Goodreads and Penguin Books for a copy of an advance proof of ‘What She Left’.

From the beginning the reader is aware of Alice’s demise - she drowned whilst under the influence of alcohol. There is speculation that she may have committed suicide. Alice was a respected journalist who was popular although had made enemies as a result of her honest reporting.

Professor Jeremy Cooke, an academic, embarks on piecing together Alice’s life via her digital footprint and gathers info
...more
Claire
What She Left is the pieces of jigsaw that create both the picture of who Alice Salmon was and the story of how she died and the aftermath. Was it suicide or was she murdered?

The story is told from many viewpoints: Alice, her lifetime best friend Megan, her mum Liz, her boyfriend Luke, her professor and posthumous biographer Dr Cooke amongst others.

The story also time jumps a lot to different points before and after Alice's death. At times I found it a little difficult to follow, but it got easi
...more
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Unanswered questions (spoilers) 1 21 Oct 15, 2015 01:15AM  

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T. R. Richmond is an award-wining journalist who's written for local, regional and national newspapers, magazines and websites.
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“I rarely read newspapers. There's more truth in a decent novel.” 4 likes
“Life's like Scrabble, you shouldn't save your good letters, you've got to use them as soon as you get them.” 3 likes
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