The Facts of Life and Death by Belinda Bauer

The Facts of Life and Death - Belinda Bauer
A young woman – just like her – had been murdered and dumped in a lay-by like a fast-food wrapper, and a grown man thought she had it coming.

Wasn't that reason enough to be angry?

You know those mysteries where you know what's behind it almost from the start? The ones where you get a feeling of what's actually happening? I hate those books. It makes for tedious reading most times since you just sit around, waiting for everyone else to catch up. This is one of those books. And darn it if it isn't one of my top reads in 2014!

Murder was a learning curve. But he was getting better at it all the time.

In The Facts of Life and Death we're introduced to a small town where nature and bad economy is slowly overruling the inhabitants. When young women are suddenly killed, the town is shaken. The murderer makes his victims strip and call their mothers to tell them goodbye before killing them. While the police starts to investigate, ten year old Ruby Trick and her father decides to go look for the murderer on their own. Ruby has her own problems to deal with; she's bullied in school; their house slowly giving in to the force of nature; and her parents' possible divorce. For a ten year old, it's more exciting to hunt killers with your father who is hundred times better than your mother who's always complaining about father's unemployment, laziness, and other various things he's bad at. 

Funny how your perspective changed as fast as the circumstances.

Told from various points of view, the story mainly follows Ruby's perspective on the whole thing. At times though, we're thrown into the killer's perspective, then a young police, Calvin. There are also instances when we're in the heads of the victims, the mothers, and Ruby's new teacher, Miss Sharpe. When seeing it from all from these perspectives the solution on who is the killer appeared rather soon. However, there are two ways to read this, I realize. You're either in oblivion and sitting on the edge of your seat as the events play out, eager to understand who's behind these disgusting murders. Or, you're in the know, watching with horror the manipulation and progress of the murderer. Because this is one of those books where either way makes it a great read. As in my case, in the know, you're never waiting for them to catch up. You're wishing for them to catch up. There is not a dull moment. The clues to who's the murderer are few, and you're curious on how everyone else will put the puzzle together. Most of all; who will solve it and what happens when they do?

A great read. Highly recommended!