I recently read author Elizabeth Little’s second book, Pretty as a Picture. I liked it so much, that I immediately put myself on the wait list for her debut novel Dear Daughter. The books are very different except for the personality of the main character. In Pretty as a Picture, the protagonist is a movie editor with a caustic personality, a biting sense of humor, and a deep-down vulnerability. In Dear Daughter, the protagonist is a snotty rich girl with a caustic personality, a biting sense of humor, and a deep-down vulnerability.
Having said that, I enjoyed Dear Daughter nearly as much as her second book. And I couldn’t help but like both women, despite their sarcastic personalities.
Jane Jenkins is a little snob, known only for being the obnoxious daughter of a rich heiress. She parties hard and is a favorite of the paparazzi because she is so outrageous. Popular until such time as she is arrested for. and convicted of, murdering her mother. The problem is, while Jane thinks she’s innocent, she can’t be sure as she was totally high the night of the murder.
She is released five years later on a technicality. Harangued by the paparazzi, and one media person in particular, she sets out to find out who killed her mother, even if it is she. She learns that her high-classed mother actually grew up in a small town in South Dakota, so that’s where she heads, in total disguise.
Much to her surprise, the town is full of many secrets, some having to do with her mother. Her search for the truth is relentless, despite the fact that people start to figure out who she is.
I found the premise somewhat unrealistic. I understood the media’s interest in her, but couldn’t quite understand why they (and mostly the one reporter) were so distraught that she was let go. Still, Jane Jenkins is unlike most main characters in the same way that Melissa Dahl was in Pretty as a Picture, which made the story much more interesting.
I recommend the book.