A Thousand Steps by T. Jefferson Parker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Smooth as butter. That's how this book went down for me. Having been a teen in Southern California in the 70s, the echoes of 60s were always there, especially around the beach cities where this story is set. Without even getting into the plot or characters, I have to applaud the author's evocation of the times and places. He brings them to life in a way that will appeal to those of us that remember it, as well as those who have not.
In the middle of that scene, the 'stoner' 60s, we find teenaged Matt, bombing around the streets and beaches on his bicycle trying to make a life for himself without much support from is mom, his dad out of the picture, his older brother in Viet Nam and then his beloved older sister goes missing. Add in a dead girl found on the beach who's scarily similar to his sister and we're off to the races with a suspenseful story that never seems to cut Matt a break. The police don't seem to be much help. The hippies at the local head shop are helpful, but shady. And that's just the beginning of Matt's woes.
Matt is an immensely likable character. Amazingly resilient and resolute in his quest to uncover the mystery of where his sister is. He doesn't give up. But he will grow up. This is a highly entertaining book.
Disclosure: Thank you to Netgalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge Books for providing a free copy of this book in return for my honest review.
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