Book Review: Hairpin Bridge by Taylor Adams

Hairpin Bridge  by Taylor Adams Genre:  crime thriller, suspense Synopsis:   Three months ago, Lena Nguyen’s estranged twin sister, Ca...

Hairpin Bridge by Taylor Adams

Genre: crime thriller, suspense

Three months ago, Lena Nguyen’s estranged twin sister, Cambry, drove to a remote bridge seventy miles outside of Missoula, Montana, and jumped two hundred feet to her death. At least, that is the official police version. But Lena isn’t buying it.

Now she’s come to that very bridge, driving her dead twin’s car and armed with a cassette recorder, determined to find out what really happened by interviewing the highway patrolman who allegedly discovered her sister’s body.

Corporal Raymond Raycevic has agreed to meet Lena at the scene. He is sympathetic, forthright, and professional. But his story still seems a bit off. For one thing, he stopped Cambry for speeding just an hour before she supposedly leaped to her death. Then there are the sixteen attempted 911 calls from her cell phone, made in what was unfortunately a dead zone. But perhaps most troubling of all, the state trooper is referred to by name in Cambry’s final enigmatic text to her sister: Please Forgive Me. Lena will do anything to uncover the truth. But as her twin’s final hours come into focus, Lena’s search turns into a harrowing tooth-and-nail fight for her own survival—one that will test everything she thought she knew about her sister and herself...

Content/Trigger Warnings: fatphobia, death, suicide, racism, misogyny, paranoia, trauma, violence

Overall rating:  ★★☆☆☆

Well… that definitely wasn’t No Exit. I had high expectations for Hairpin Bridge because I gobbled down No Exit in mere hours. I mean, I literally read it in just one sitting. I had to pee for so long and kept telling myself “when I finish this chapter, I’ll go pee” but every time I finished a chapter, I just had to keep going. Hairpin Bridge didn’t even compare.

I found that the chapters were confusing because it was going between present-day and the MC’s perception of what happened in the past, but the storylines were incredibly similar, and the chapters of the past were just assumptions made from deductive reasoning but the whole time, as the reader, I don’t know what’s true or not. I tend to like an unreliable narrator, but that’s not what this was. It was just confusing.

Past the confusion and weird layout of the plot, I found the book to be problematic throughout. I mean, how many times can one character call his wife fat and say she talks too much? Apparently not enough, if this book’s any indication. And it wasn’t just the antagonist that was problematic. The MC literally calls someone’s Irish accent a “leprechaun accent.” I’m sorry, what?

Now what I’m trying to figure out is why Taylor Adams, a white male, is writing thrillers from the female perspective. I haven’t read Adams’ first two novels (I didn’t even know they existed until right now), but I know that No Exit was also from a female perspective. And I found that book to be phenomenal. I’m curious if I would feel the same rereading it today. I made the assumption that Adams was a female writer. Even more problematic is that Hairpin Bridge has a main character that’s female and Vietnamese.

While the plot of Hairpin Bridge was interesting and twisty, it was overwhelmingly twisty to the point where I’m actually not even sure what was going on anymore. And the fact that the white author is writing the book from a POC perspective (about 95% of this book is from that character POV) makes me not want to read more from Adams in the future. I’m going to have to hit DISS on this book.

You Might Also Like