Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Riveting And Mesmerizing Darlings!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                          The Tillman children have plenty of reason to bear ill will.  The question is whom do they direct it towards??????????????

                                            Dan Chaon's novel is actually two stories in one.  In 1983, the Tillman children were at the center of a vicious murder committed upon their parents, and aunt and uncle.  Everything pointed to Rusty, the teen aged son the Tillman adopted, and he was convicted and imprisoned.

                                               Thirty years later, Dustin Tillman is a successful psychologist and family man.  His sisters, Kate and Wave (for Waverna) are estranged from one another.  Meanwhile, Rusty is about to be released, and a series of serial type murders is being perpetrated on straight college boys in Dustin's area.

                                                Was Rusty actually guilty?  If not, then who?  What about the present day serial killer?  Why go after straight college boys, when the typical move would be toward girls?????   What the hell is going on, here?

                                                  These are some of the questions this novel tackles and answers.  The denouement stumped and shocked me, but, in the end, made sense.  Yes, the novel is grizzly in a thriller way, but it is also character driven, so at times the readers forgets this is a thriller, and feels more in Jane Smiley territory.  But maybe that is a lulling of false security.  It works.

                                                    "Ill Will" proves I need to read more Dan Chaon.  I have a recall of reading his collection "Among The Missing," years before, but not enough of one, so I should read it again.  As well as his other work.

                                                      As for the title, it is both applicable to the story, and cautionary to the reader.  Be careful whom you direct ill will to.

                                                       You just might be wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Bonnie said...

I loved this book! I plan to read it again. It had so many twists and turns. I was lucky enough to get an advanced copy and review it. I gave it 4 stars. I also plan to read more of his books.

The Raving Queen said...


Yes, I too want to read
more of his books! I love
when a thriller is able to
surprise and stump me!