I liked this first novel in Lippman's Tess Monaghan series. It's not perfect, the pace of the story is ackward, Lippman spends a big part of the novel establishing Tess' character, her inner circle of family. The plot has some holes and is wrapped up in haste in the last chapters. I like Tess, her inner struggle, her unusual family roots. Baltimore is also a huge character in the book and Lippman does make the reader feel like you are walking, driving, rowing with Tess in this American city at the end of the 1990's. Overall, a good first effort. I'm looking forward to the second book in the series.