The Resemblance
August 25, 2022
Book Review

The Resemblance

reviewed by Fiona Cook

When student Jay Kemp is struck and killed, witnesses can’t shed much light; but they all agree on two things. The driver who struck him and fled was laughing – and that driver was identical to Jay.

As impossible as it sounds, Detective Marlitt Kaplan is determined to follow this investigation wherever it leads, especially when she chases the mystery to the doors of the victims fraternity and the secrets that accompany Greek life on campus. As much as she tries to remain impartial, her own past can’t help but to influence her, and it’s not long before she finds herself in more danger than she could possibly have prepared for.

Lauren Nossett’s debut novel, The Resemblance, is a strong debut. Much like Marlitt herself, the book took a little while for me to warm up to – but once I did, I was more than rewarded for persisting. The author’s own experience as a former professor is used to paint an authentic picture of a college and its inhabitants; young people on the verge of adulthood, still learning to trust their own judgement and building themselves into the adults they haven’t quite become. Simultaneously maturing and not yet all the way there, it’s a tricky phase of life and one Lauren Nossett portrays with sensitivity and insight.

Marlitt herself is a character I became very attached to – as the book goes on, and the reader is given more of her story, she is revealed as a very real character, one who felt more and more like a person I’d like to get to know. The investigation follows a pleasingly intriguing path, too, and when you marry an authentic setting to a compelling main character and a solid, twisty, mystery, you have yourself a great book, even more impressive for a debut. I’ll absolutely be looking out for more from Lauren Nossett, and I think readers will find a lot to like here.

The Resemblance available at:

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