In Suspects Thomas Berger invites us into the most American of towns: a manicured hamlet that's not quite as safe as it once was but that is still inhabited by good, hard workers, friendly neighbors, and, of course, that ubiquitous staple - dysfunctional families. One fine morning, the recently widowed Mary Jane Jones finds herself unusually befuddled when her friend Donna - Mrs. Larry - Howland doesn't answer her phone. While Mary Jane would never consider it her place to turn the doorknob of her neighbor's house, her curiosity and concern get the better of her and she lets herself in to see just what is up. Before she knows it, a normal suburban day has gone from peculiar to shocking. What Mary Jane finds confirms her deepest, most secret suspicions: Donna Howland and her young daughter, paragons of virtue, have been savagely killed. Before anyone can truly believe what has happened, an investigative frenzy ensues. While the town's residents are busy looking over their shoulders, a most unlikely relationship is forged between a hardened cop and a down-on-his-luck drifter, a man who has all the makings of a prime suspect - except a motive. In traditional Berger style, what is a murder mystery on the surface reveals itself to be a tale of much deeper meaning. In Suspects Berger takes on friendship, family loyalty, and the American dream.
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September 1996 : USA Hardback
July 2016 : USA, Canada Kindle edition