The Last Thing She Rold Me - Linda Green
2019 Mystery Selection for My Book Box.

The thing about subscription box or book services is that you are always taking a risk. I’ve been lucky in the two I use – My Book Box and the NYRB Classics book club. Truthfully, I do not always like or enjoy the selections, but the pleasure outweighs anything negative (and usually I know someone who will enjoy the book). To be honest, there have been a few times when My Book Box has selected books that were just the right book for me at that time. Many times, both services have included books that I would have bypassed if I had seen in a bookstore because even those of us who are voracious and omnivorous readers will bypass books based on a variety of factors including the cover, bit on the back, and so on. This would have been one of those books for me. Thankfully, I have My Book Box.

Truth be told, The Last Thing She Told Me by Linda Green is a good book that succeeds not so much because of the plotting but because of the earnestness of the writing. One crucial aspect of the plot does hinge on a plot point that to some readers might not quite work – though to be fair to Green she does a very good job of selling it. That aspect aside, the book itself is a quick engrossing read.

What Green does is examine how little or how much society has changed over the lives of four generations of women. The conceit that is used to tell the stories – three unfolding narratives – present day, letters, and diary work extremely well and the voices stand out from each other. Nicola’s relationships – with her mother, grandmother, husband, and daughters – is well drawn and works.

For some readers, the reveals aren’t going to be that big, but the book is more about reactions to events than the actual events, and this is what makes it interesting.