LITTLE DEATHS is a crime thriller set in 1965 and is inspired by a true story. It is Emma Flint’s debut novel.
Ruth Malone is a single mother of two children living in a working class Queens neighbourhood. She works as a cocktail waitress and does her best to provide for her two children. But she dresses to perfection and never leaves the house without her hair and make-up done and she has had several boyfriends since splitting with her husband. So when she wakes one morning to find her children missing, it doesn’t take long for Inspector Devlin to think her responsible for their disappearance. And when the children a found murdered, Ruth becomes the prime suspect to the point where the police aren’t looking for anyone else.
Pete Wonicke is a young reporter looking for his first big story. He manages to get assigned to the Ruth Malone story. Initially, like the other reporters, he believes Ruth guilty and portrays her as a loose woman in his stories. But gradually Pete becomes obsessed with Ruth and convinced of her innocence.
The story follows Ruth as her life falls apart and Pete as he gives up everything to try to save Ruth.
But the truth about the missing Malone children is not what anyone imagined and more tragic for that.
This was a very atmospheric novel. It was slow moving as it pulled you in to Ruth’s tragic life. I found some of the descriptions in the novel where brilliant at capturing all of my senses, and transporting me to Ruth’s world.
I enjoyed this novel and I’m looking forward to Emma Flint’s next novel.