review: After the Crash by Michel Bussi

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Thank you you to NetGalley and Hachette Books for the ARC in exchange for an honest review. I appreciate it!

This is definitely an unputdownable thriller. It begins with a heart-rending scene that evoked terrible memories of the recent Germanwings crash in the Alps. A passenger plane soars through the clouds, with over one hundred and sixty souls on board. What first seems like turbulence dissolves into horror, as the plane smashes into a mountainside.

The only survivor is a baby girl, seemingly thrown from the plane and kept warm by the burning aircraft that holds the ashes of her parents. It’s creepy and so sad – imagining this tiny girl, alone on a snowy mountaintop, staring into the mouth of hell.

It turns out that there were two baby girls on the plane. One, the child of a penniless family who sell chips and hot dogs to beachgoers. The other, the child of billionaires. But which one died, and which one lived? In the days before DNA testing, supposition reigns.

After the Crash is a mystery, but it’s also a stirring and moving account of two families, struggling to accept the loss of their children, AND fighting for the baby they both believe is their granddaughter. As someone without kids (I have a furry baby though), I find it difficult to relate to stories about kids, but I still feel the natural empathy and sadness and can see why both families would be obsessed with the one survivor of the conflagration. She represents hope to them, and to so many.

The mystery is intriguing, told in the diary of a private investigator hired by the rich family to ferret out the truth. As for the rest of the characters – meh. Grand-Duc spends way too much time rabbiting on about Nicole’s breasts. Ample as they are, I couldn’t have cared less. The ‘hero’ is supposed to be Marc, but he grossed me out. He was attracted to his sister for God’s sake. Whether they were blood relatives or not, he grew up with her. Dude, not cool. Malvina was interesting, but a bit too whacky for my tastes. As for Lylie, she was about as interesting as day old white bread.

HOWEVER, the story itself was intriguing, compelling and immensely readable. You won’t be able to put it down, guaranteed.

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