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The Crack Magazine

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Death in Her Hands by Ottessa Moshfegh

Her name was Magda. Nobody will ever know who killed her. It wasn’t me. Here is her dead body. That was the note found by Vesta Gul, an elderly widow, as she walks her dog not too far from her lakeside cabin. At risk of being ridiculed by the police, she decides to forget all about the letter, until the desire to solve Magda’s murder becomes too strong to resist. Of the Moshfegh novels I’ve read, two similarities stick out: the protagonists are rather unlikeable women on the outskirts of society, and most of the plot takes place inside their heads. If you’re looking for an actual murder mystery, this isn’t it. What this novel does do is allow you to inhabit the kind of person that society often casts aside. Unfortunately for me, I really did want the old woman to solve crimes. MG

Published by Vintage

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