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4. Almost Home by Pam Jenoff...

January 11, 2010
FTC Disclosure: My copy of Almost Home was on loan from my local library. I am an IndieBound and Amazon affiliate, and any purchases made by clicking on the cover or the links provided may result in monetary compensation.

almost homeAbout the book:
Ten years have passed since American Jordan Weiss, a State Department intelligence officer, lived in Cambridge, England, where she suffered the loss of her gifted rower boyfriend, Jared Short, in an apparent drowning. After hearing from her former roommate and best friend, Sarah Sunderson, who has terminal ALS, Jordan transfers from Washington to the London office. She has a surprisingly quick reunion with Jared's friend Chris Bannister, a journalist who asks for her assistance in proving Jared was murdered. In a harrowing series of events, Jordan discovers Jared's death might be connected to the State Department's investigation of American and British companies that are laundering and funding Albanian mob activities. Jenoff keeps the pace brisk and the plot tight, flipping smoothly between Jordan's past and present while concluding with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger.

drey's thoughts:
When I finally got around to reading Pam Jenoff's The Diplomat's Wife, I couldn't believe that I'd never read her books before. And I wanted more. Luckily for me, I'd picked up Almost Home at the same time as The Diplomat's Wife when I was at the library. It took a while to get to, but I finally did.

Almost Home is not similar to The Diplomat's Wife. For one thing, it's not set in wartime, and it's not about someone who's been uprooted and displaced by war. But it is similar in that the main character is someone who has a past to face, and has a hard time doing it. 

Jordan has spent her adult life trying to forget the little corner in her mind where she's stuffed all the memories associated with Jared, and therefore, her time at Cambridge. And she's been successful so far. Until she gets a letter from her BFF Sarah, and asks for a transfer to the London office. 

Once in London though, it seems like everything and everyone is conspiring together to make Jordan relive her past. And yet, there are people who do not want her looking into Jared's past. But once she finds out that Jared may have been murdered, she cannot help opening that Pandora's Box of memories and events. And now, who can Jordan trust?

I thought that Almost Home was very well-written. The characters are well fleshed-out (though I thought that the Jordan-Sarah relationship would've taken a bit more than it did, considering that she went to London for Sarah), the plot is pretty tight, and the surprises are surprising (lol). It'll keep you reading until you get to the end, which I didn't think was quite that jaw-dropping. But I want to find out more, because this is one of those books that leave you wondering about the end--the real one (as real as fiction can get, that is).

drey's rating: 3/5 Good

Title: Almost Home
Author: Pam Jenoff
ISBN-13: 9781416590699
Hardcover: 374 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, 2009
Purchase at IndieBound, Amazon

Challenges: 100+, Support Your Local Library


bermudaonion said...

I haven't read any of Jenoff's work either. I think I'd rather start with The Diplomat's Wife.

Darlene said...

Nice review. I've got this book coming up to read. I've heard The Kommandant's Wife by her is an excellent read.

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