The Last Girl: Book summary and reviews of The Last Girl by Jane Casey

The Last Girl

A Maeve Kerrigan Novel

by Jane Casey

The Last Girl
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  • Published in USA  May 2013
    368 pages
    Genre: Mysteries

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Book Summary

Vast wealth offers London defense attorney Philip Kennford a lot of things: a gorgeous house with a pool in the backyard, connections in the top echelons of society, a wardrobe worthy of Milan runways. But his money doesn't provide a happy marriage, or good relationships with his twin daughters…and it does nothing to protect his family when someone brutally murders his wife and daughter in their own home.

When Detective Constable Maeve Kerrigan arrives at the scene, the two survivors - Philip and his second favorite daughter, Lydia - both claim to have seen nothing, but it's clear right away that this is an unhappy family accustomed to keeping secrets. Maeve soon finds herself entangled in a case with a thousand leads that all seem to point nowhere, and it doesn't help that her boss, whom she trusts more than almost anyone, is starting to make decisions that Maeve finds questionable at best.

In The Last Girl, Jane Casey once again demonstrates her ability to write vivid, three-dimensional characters and spin a gripping, unpredictable mystery.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"So many plots, so few pages to contain them. And Derwent is so irritating that readers may well wish the killers list had included him." - Kirkus

"The frenetic action seems a bit over the top at times, but the third Maeve Kerrigan mystery remains an engaging procedural with well-drawn characters and a principled protagonist whom readers will want to follow." - Booklist

"The police proceedings will keep readers turning the pages, but the final revelations and the reasons for the murders may strike some as implausibly lurid and clichéd." - Publishers Weekly

"The third time is the charm with this exciting thriller, and Casey's growing fan base will snatch up the latest entry in what has turned out to be a can't-wait-for-the-next-one series." - Library Journal

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Reader Reviews

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Mary P. (Bellingham, WA)

The Last Girl
This is a solid police procedural with an interesting cast of characters, the main one being London DC Maeve Kerrigan. I enjoyed the bits of humor, present in the conversations and reflections of the characters. It was easy to slip into the story as it was written in first person, and Maeve is a complete character, dealing with professional and personal relationships. The psychological dynamics of the family whose mother and daughter are murdered are thoughtfully presented. It's a all-at-one time read, highly recommended.

Cheryl K. (East Aurora, NY)

The Last Girl
Although I have not read previous books by Jane Casey, I thoroughly loved "The Last Girl". The twists and turns of the plot, as well as the fine character development made the book a very pleasurable experience. As the mystery unfolded, I thought I had it solved several times. The ending was not what I expected, yet seemed to fit the story perfectly. I believe a book club would have fun discussing the characters and their relationships to the mystery, as well as to each other.
This is a well-told "whodunit" and I look forward to reading previous works of Ms. Casey and her next published novel.

Elaine M. (Beaver Falls, PA)

The Last Girl
This was the first book that I have read by Jane Casey, I truly enjoyed the story line and the characters' interactions. These interactions made the reader feel a part of the story and led her through many twists and turns believing she could solve this mystery. Casey had an ending that, this reader, did not see coming! Unfortunately, this story is part of a series; so the other two plots that were intertwined in the story did not come to a conclusion. Therefore, the reader is left waiting for the next book.

Kathy S. (Danbury, CT)

The Last Girl
I have enjoyed all of Jane Casey's books, and "The Last Girl" was no exception. Set in London, the book opens with a grisly double-murder and no viable suspects other than the husband - maybe. The novel is told in first person by DC Maeve Kerrigan, a female detective looking to make her mark in a traditionally male dominated field. The interplay between Maeve and her boss, DI Josh Derwent, is engaging and adds a note of levity to an otherwise grim investigation. With no witnesses, interviews that raise more questions than provide answers, family secrets, half-truths, bold lies and blind alleys, this book will keep the reader guessing and entertained right up to the last page.

Linda S. (Carlsbad, CA)

The Last Girl
"The Last Girl" is a compelling read. The novel grabbed my attention from the beginning and I couldn't put it down. The book is a police procedural featuring DC Maeve Kerrigan. The characters are fully developed and the interactions with Maeve's co-workers and the relationships in her private life are well presented and believable. I really cared about what happened to the characters and particularly enjoyed the bantering between DC Kerrigan and DI Derwent. The dual plots move along nicely with enough twists and turns to keep the reader interested and to try to determine whodunit. I am an avid mystery reader and thoroughly enjoyed the book. "The Last Girl" was my first introduction to the series and I plan to read the earlier books featuring DC Kerrigan. I also hope there will be subsequent books to look forward to in this series.

Anne M. (Austin, TX)

Really tricky plotting
I LOVED THIS BOOK. Normally I can figure out a whodunit long before the author gives it up, but I was stumped until the final "reveal." What a nice surprise!
I hadn't read Casey's previous Maeve Kerrigan books there are two so some of the references to the past flew by me ... but I'm going to remedy that situation as soon as I get through the rest of my bedside stack. The characters are interesting -- I do wish Maeve would punch her partner/immediate boss in the mouth, though he's a real sexist pig, to use 1970s terminology -- and Casey can really spin a twisted yarn. Highly recommended!

...21 more reader reviews

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More Information

Jane Casey was born and raised in Dublin. A graduate of Oxford with a master's of philosophy from Trinity College, Dublin, she lives in London, where she works as an editor. This is her fourth novel and her third about Maeve Kerrigan.

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