If you like crime fiction with a slow burn that lingers long after you’ve finished it, run, don’t walk to your nearest bookstore or library and check out Tangerine this Tuesday. Christine Mangan’s first novel is one of those books that takes readers on an emotional roller coaster ride as they try to figure out what’s what. Fans of noir suspense will not want to miss this one.
Joyce Carol Oates nails it when she writes of Tangerine:
“As if Donna Tartt, Gillian Flynn, and Patricia Highsmith had collaborated on a screenplay to be filmed by Hitchcock—suspenseful and atmospheric.”
Read the book now before the movie comes out. George Clooney’s production company already purchased the film rights and Scarlett Johansson is slated to star.
Tangerine by Christine Mangan is a sharp dagger of a book—a debut so tightly wound, so replete with exotic imagery and charm, so full of precise details and extraordinary craftsmanship, it will leave you absolutely breathless (available March 27, 2018).
The manuscript that eventually became Tangerine was plucked from a slush pile by literary agent Elisabeth Weed, whom Christine Mangan thanks in her acknowledgments. This will no doubt give un-agented and unpublished writers a spark of hope. Mangan doesn’t go into great detail about the hard work she put into this novel or the number of drafts she wrote to get to publication, but I can tell you about the rollercoaster ride I went on while reading her first novel. I was quickly pulled into the story and found myself going up and down with it—enjoying it, not liking it, thinking that it was clever, thinking that it was stupid, thinking that maybe I was stupid and not getting something. Eventually, I started to make connections. After finishing the novel, I started making even more connections—and now I’m in desperate need of a friend to read it so we can discuss.
The novel starts at the end, a prologue set in Spain. Three men pull a dead body out of the water. The narrator is thinking—about Tangier, about her—and tells the reader that her mind now “often plays tricks” on her. And then, with Chapter One, we’re in Tangier. It’s 1956, and although the rationing of World War II might be fading away, the shockwaves from the war are reverberating, causing a swelling of discontent.
Title: Tangerine: A Novel
Author: Christine Mangan
Publisher: Ecco, March 27, 2018
Format read: ebook
Bottom Line: Fans of noir suspense and stories about twisted friendships between women will not want to miss Tangerine.
Categories: Book review