PAPER GHOSTS by Julia Heaberlin
It was with a certain amount of trepidation that I started this book. The whole “young girls, serial killer thing” wasn’t something I really wanted to read about, due to its often gruesomeness. However, that was not at all emphasised in Heaberlin’s novel. Not only is this a suspenseful, cleverly-plotted work, but it’s also extremely well-written. Heaberlin definitely has a way with the English language.
Carl Feldman, a documentary photographer, might have dementia (or not), and might be a serial killer of girls across Texas (or not). He’s lured out of his half-way house by a young woman who claims to be his daughter. She’s the sister of a girl who went missing years before, one of his supposed victims. They’re going on a ten-day road trip to re-visit crime scenes linked to photographs that he had taken, with the hope that he’ll confess to his crimes, though he claims that he has not committed any.
This road-trip is like none other anyone’s ever taken. At times hilariously funny, frightening, sad, and poignant, Carl is often the one in “the driver’s seat”. What they find at the end of the road is something that no one could have imagined.
I’ve added Julia Heaberlin to my list of “must reads”. Hopefully her other novels are as good as this one.