History seems to repeat itself across generations when a murder and the disappearance of a painting lead a Connecticut woman to investigate her sister’s private life.
Marred by tragedy at an early age, sisters Kate Woodward and Beth Lathrop coped with their mother’s murder and their kidnapping during an art heist in the family gallery in two very different ways. Beth married Pete Lathrop, started a family, and continued the family tradition of mentoring starving artists as part of the now-named Lathrop Gallery in the town of Black Hall. Kate was unmoored by what happened, becoming a pilot traveling through life with no connection to anyone except for Beth and childhood friends Lulu and Scotty. When Beth is six months pregnant, she’s killed in her own home, and Moonlight, the Benjamin Morrison painting stolen in the first heist, once again goes missing. Detective Conor Reid couldn’t be more shocked by the turn of events. He’s kept an eye on Beth and Kate for years since being part of the team that investigated the first crime, oversight that Rice presents as sweet rather than stalkerish. Conor is certain that Pete killed Beth. After all, the marriage was on the rocks, and Pete already had a new child with Nicola, his paramour. But Conor’s theory of the crime is harder to prove than he anticipates. Kate’s just as desperate to learn the truth about Beth, and she finds that the more she investigates Beth’s last day, the more she wonders whether she ever knew her sister at all.
A long buildup culminates in a climax that’s not as satisfying as the rest of the story.