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Book Talk: Scottoline, ‘What Happened to the Bennetts’

During my lifetime, there have been only a few occasions when I’ve stayed up all night in order to finish reading a novel. The first time that I remember was when I was 16 and got caught up in Herman Wouk’s classic, The Caine Mutiny (1951), which was even better than the true-to-novel movie (1954), starring Humphrey Bogart as the steel-ball-rattling Captain Queeg. Of course, during my college years I pulled many all-nighters, but that was different, and they were always the nights before tests.

After I got into Lisa Scottoline’s “What Happened to the Bennetts,” (2022, 478 pages in paperback format) I couldn’t put the book down until I finished, just in time to make breakfast. Scottoline is another of my favorite authors, and she’s outdone herself in this recent novel.

The ever-compounding problems experienced by the Bennett family (Jason and Lucinda and their children Allison and Ethan) begin as they’re taking a leisurely drive in their new Mercedes E-class sedan. They’re being tailgated (Jason says, “I’m a scenic route kind of guy.”), and the kids are urging their dad to speed up. Finally, he pulls over to let the pick-up truck pass. But, after passing, the truck stops, blocking the road.



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