The Weight of Blood is a novel set in a small Missouri town, where a young girl who disappeared a year earlier has just been found dead. Lucy was a friend of the dead girl, Cherie, and Lucy is also the daughter of Lila, another woman who disappeared mysteriously several years earlier. Naturally, Lucy connects the two missing girls in her mind and wonders if her mother met a fate similar to Cherie’s.
The author alternates perspectives between Lucy in the present and Lila about eighteen years earlier, gradually revealing both what happened to Lila, and Lucy’s discovery of her mother’s fate. Along the way, that means uncovering several more dark secrets — not just about her mother but about her father and some of the other people closest to her. A small town can hide a lot of grim secrets, and there are more than enough mysteries to go around in The Weight of Blood.
Lucy’s story is set in the present, but except for a few characters with cellphones and the fact that the creepy characters are cooking meth instead of brewing moonshine, it could as easily be set several decades ago. Lucy’s hometown of Henbane is a rural backwater removed from the mainstream of twenty-first century America, populated by characters who have lots of reasons to hide the truth.I found this a quick and compelling read, and was drawn in by both Lucy’s and Lila’s narrative voices, as well as by the vivid depiction of the town where they live.