I'm just not sure about this novel. I enjoyed it, but it wasn't great. The beginning was weak, but the ending was strong. The use of psychological dramatical insight via one of the characters being a psychoanalyst was clever. But given how shallow I found the story at times, the number of under-utilised story threads was frustrating.
This had the bare bones of a great story, and I wished it had focused more on the political intrigue and how it had Morrow over a barrel, rather than just seeing the psychological drama behind it. The story kept me reading, but it was like I was reading 'bland vanilla' at times. Everything was there for a great thriller, but it didn't grab me. There was no hook that really got me, until the very end.
One thing that I was really disappointed with was the lack of a sense of place in the novel. I was waiting for it, but it never came. I felt like the novel was written without many 'signposts' to give it this so that it would be palatable to an overseas audience perhaps? I really liked the idea of 'Melbourne Literary Noir', but without this sense of place, I never got it. What I did get however, was the degeneracy and amorality of some of the wealthy, but that is something that is universal and not unique to Melbourne.
But as I said, the ending was strong, even if it did come up a bit quick. I thought that Capp was brave in having the main character go through what she did at the end. It was heart wrenching and probably represented the decline of lives lived in guilt, regret or alternatively with thoughtless disregard of our effects on others, even if this character is the only one that could be genuinely thought of as a victim. But she is the one who seems to have carried the burden of others' sins. Given the arc of the storyline, it really was the only sensible ending, but I still give Capp kudos for giving this character this resolution. Many writers would have shied from this.
I think there will be people who enjoy this book, and rightly so, because it is easy to read and the plot is engaging. I just found it to be a bit up and down and scattered with a few too many lost opportunities.