By Laura Lippman
While Felix Brewer meets nineteen-year-old Bernadette "Bambi" Gottschalk at a Valentine's Dance in 1959, he charms her with wild grants, a few of which he truly retains. because of his lucrative-if now not all legal-businesses, she and their 3 little women stay in luxurious. yet at the Fourth of July, 1976, Bambi's cozy international implodes while Felix, newly convicted and dealing with felony, mysteriously vanishes.
Though Bambi has no suggestion the place her husband-or all of his money-might be, she suspects one lady does: his committed younger mistress, Julie. whilst Julie disappears ten years to the day that Felix went at the lam, each person assumes she's left to affix her outdated lover-until her continues to be are ultimately present in a secluded wooded park.
Now, twenty-six years after Julie went lacking, Roberto "Sandy" Sanchez, a retired Baltimore detective operating chilly situations for a few more cash, is investigating her homicide. What he discovers is a tangled net of bitterness, jealously, resentment, greed, and longing stretching over 3 a long time that connects 5 fascinating girls: a devoted spouse, a lifeless mistress, and 3 very diversified daughters. And on the middle is the fellow who, notwithstanding gone, hasn't ever been forgotten by way of the 5 ladies who enjoyed him: the enigmatic Felix Brewer.
Somewhere among the secrets and techniques and lies connecting previous and current, Sandy will locate the reality. And while he does, nobody will ever be an analogous.
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Extra resources for After I'm Gone: A Novel
It’s the smell of money, he says. You know, says Rolf as he sets down beers for Bessie and her daughter, I ought to stuff a few and give them a good home over by the salad bar. When you get a chance, Rolf, the cashier repeats. The door. I’ve got to give her a raise. Rolf winks at the two women, moves to the door and jiggles it closed against his great bulk. Then he wanders off through the arch two old grizzlies make over the kitchen entry. Some date, says the daughter. He owns the whole bar, and all the animals, and all the tourists who come to look at the animals who pay for drinks 42 to look.
Bessie nods and pushes her glass across the table. Please. Mrs. Hardy pours in more soda instead of scotch, topping off her own glass too. You didn’t dream about your son, did you? No, says Bessie. That dream is over. My daughter says he is in town, but I don’t see him. But I want to see him. Whatever he’s doing, I still want to see him. She rubs her ﬁngers with drops from her drink to get off the polish. The dream was in a big ﬁeld. I never dream things outside, says Mrs. Hardy. The light is all wrong.
They are amazed and silent. They always sleep out during a hunt. Do you want to sleep next to someone you think might be a god? Wouldn’t you rather have a shelter with such a man around? says Tall Pigeon Eye. He is careful not to say this man is a god, just that he might be. The problem is a matter of comfort in the end. When people meet God, they want to be as uncomfortable as possible, dragging themselves up thousands of steps on their knees, or hungry. A ﬁne line exists between those who actually enjoy this way of meeting God and those who don’t, who simply feel their face to God must be stretched tight in anguish, a release from comfort and the everyday.