Mystic River – Review


Mystic River
Mystic River

Crime stories are what I feed on and I love to read about murders and crime dramas. Does this make me sound creepy? I don’t know, it’s beyond my control.

I came across Mystic River when someone suggested that the book is one of a kind and is a crime mystery. It is one of those novels where you can never guess the suspense. Well, since I read so many crime novels, usually I end up guessing what’s coming next. I am good at picking up clues from the books and predicting who the killer might be. Unfortunately (or fortunately) this didn’t happen with Mystic River. I was left guessing and the end did baffle me. I suspected everyone.

When Sean, Jimmy and Dave were children, they were playing in their neighborhood, when a strange car pulls up and one of the boys gets into the car. That day, that incident, changed their lives forever. Twenty-five years later, when they are all grown-up, something terrible happens and their paths cross again. Jimmy’s daughter is found murdered, Sean ends up investigating the case, Dave returns home with blood all over his hands and clothes. The dots start to connect. But what is the truth? Is it as simple as it seems?

It’s very easy to suspect Dave of murdering Katie Marcus, because of his bloody hands, traumatic childhood and circumstances. But, Dennis Lehane brilliantly lays out the story to the readers. I was glued to the book the moment I started reading it. You realize that it’s more than just a murder tale. You get involved in the lives of the characters and I kept oscillating between my opinion of who the murderer was.

The pain, laughter and gush of emotions from the characters is nearly palpable. Even when I watched the movie later, the characters seemed to jump out of the pages, especially Sean Penn, who plays Jimmy’s character.

A powerful and compelling read, the novel sticks with you long after you have read it.


Favorite Quotes from the book:

“Life isn’t happily ever after… It’s work. The person you love is rarely worthy of how big your love is. Because no one is worthy of that and maybe no one deserves that burden of it, either. You’ll be let down. You’ll be disappointed and have your trust broken and have a lot of real sucky days. You lose more than you win. You hate the person you love as much as you love him. But you roll up your sleeves and work – at everything – because that’s what growing older is.”

“There are threads in our lives. You pull one, and everything else gets affected.”

“Did you ever think about how one little choice could change your whole life?”

“We bury our sins here. We wash them clean.”

“Maybe someday you forget what it’s like to be human and maybe then, it’s okay.”

(Disclaimer: All opinions expressed are strictly my own and in no way influenced.)

4 Replies to “Mystic River – Review”

  1. I haven’t read Mystic River, but I’ve read Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island and Since We Fell. Shutter Island was an incredible novel that had a real B-movie, Gothic vibe to it. Since We Fell was so-so. I do have Mystic River on my kindle, I just haven’t had the chance to read it yet. I’m glad you liked it! I’ll have to get to reading it soon!


  2. Wonderful review to a wonderful book…am glad you touched upon the movie…sean penns haunting potrayal of jimmy is one of his best in my opinion…this was one of those movies that truly did justice to the book…

    Liked by 1 person

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