Review: The Last Winter of Dani Lancing, P.D. Viner

*Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book on Netgalley from the publisher in return for an honest review*
The Last Winter of Dani Lancing P.D. Viner cover
Twenty years ago, college student Dani Lancing was kidnapped and brutally murdered. The killer was never found, and the case has long gone cold. Her parents, Patty and Jim, were utterly devastated, their marriage destroyed. While Jim fell apart, Patty was consumed by the unsolved case. She abandoned her journalism career and her marriage to spend every waking hour searching and plotting. She keeps contact with Tom, Dani's childhood sweetheart, who has become a detective intent on solving murders like Dani's. When he finds a lead that seems ironclad, he brings Patty in on it. After years of dead ends, her obsession is rekindled, and she will do anything for revenge, even become a killer herself-dragging her whole family into the nightmare once again, as lies and secrets are uncovered.

P. D. Viner is an award winning film-maker and audio-book producer, now turned novelist. He has studied film and theatre in England and Russia and produced documentaries for Japanese TV. He created the popular ranges of English Literature study guides – The SmartPass audio guides and Shakespeare Appreciated. He was a terrible stand-up comedian for a while and now lives in Brighton with his wife and five year old daughter.

What a mess people can make of their lives. This book is not a pleasant read. The subject a kidnapped, raped and murdered young woman obviously sets an atmosphere already. But there was something different in this book. It was filled with hate and revenge from various characters. Written from changing points of view and suddenly switching time lines made it an challenging read as I am not so great with them. Still that challenge did not stop me from reading this book. There were so many things going on and questions to be answered that I felt the need to unravel them before I was able to put the book down. Which happens pretty much at the end because there was not really a puzzle to solve.
I was not really able to connect with the characters. Only Jim hit my sympathy button but he made some weird decisions too. Patty and Tom where just kind of scary psychopath like people that scared me a little. At the end of the book I was left with the feeling that everybody has a prize even those on the police force which makes me doubt them a lot.
I am still not sure how much I liked the book. I feel this could be one of those people will rave about and where I missed out on some spectacular detail or hint which often happens with books that leave me in doubt.

The Last Winter of Dani Lancing
Author: P. D. Viner
Publisher: Crown
Pages: 400
Format: eGalley
ISBN-10: 0804136823
ISBN-13: 9780804136822
Crown: eBook | Hardcover | AudioBook
The Last Winter of Dani Lancing

3 star review

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07 October, 2013 delete

That's a shame it was difficult to follow and the characters are not so appealing, because the plot looked interesting!

07 October, 2013 delete

When I read the description, I really thought that this is a book I would enjoy. I have only recently started reading crime novels (and some I enjoyed!) but I really like stories about revenge. The Count of Monte Cristo is one of my favourite classics, and I think the way the story was told and written, I enjoyed reading about the vengeance. I don't think that this book would give me a similar satisfaction :)

I must say that the cover is really nice though! It's like the face is a watermark and the eye is just peaking out - weird, but so cool!