A book review of The Girl in the Snow by Danya Kukafka. Post may contain affiliate links.
The Girl in the Snow by Danya Kukafka is a murder mystery, but a murder mystery with so much more. The story is set in a small town in Colorado. The title of the story comes from Lucinda Hayes, a 15 year old girl who is found murdered at a playground. What sets this story apart are the characters and the way they are developed.
The story is told through 3 different view points, each chapter named after the which character is portrayed in that chapter. Russ and Cameron are third person and Jade’s chapters are first person. It’s an interesting technique and it works well in the story.
Russ is a police officer who is set to investigate the murder. We learn about his relationship with a man who used to be his partner. A man who was Cameron’s father. A man who did something bad and is no longer in the picture. Russ is married to Ines and the difficulties in their marriage bring another element to the story.
Though I don’t remember if it is specifically mentions it, but Cameron is probably somewhere on the autism spectrum. He gets obsesses with certain things and has rituals that he uses to help him “untangle.” One of the things he is obsessed with his Lucinda, the murdered girl. This puts him at the top of the suspect list.
The last main character is Jade, who we hear from first person. Jade is the opposite of Lucinda. If Lucinda is the golden girl, Jade is the tarnished girl. She leads an unhappy life with an abusive mother. One of the best quirks about Jade are the little dialogues that she makes up – a what you wished you could say – kind of thing.
This was an especially impressive book, especially when you consider it was a debut novel. The characters are extremely fleshed out and each one unique. I look forward to reading more from Danya Kukafka.
I received an ARC of this book.