Monday, September 19, 2005

Counterfeit Son

Yes, indeed, it has been over two weeks since I posted. Not that I haven't been reading, it's just that I couldn't recommend my evolutionary psychology book to anybody, except maybe as an insomnia remedy.

I have had this book (and one other) sitting around on my "I should really return this to the library" shelf for awhile. I just didn't because I didn't want to do so before I blogged it. But the library wants it back, so here we go . . .

Book: Counterfeit Son
Author: Elaine Marie Alphin
Published: 2000

Six years after his sudden disappearance, Neil Lacey has returned to the bosom of his family. It's like a dream come true for the Laceys, except for one thing: he's not their son.

His name is Cameron Miller, and he's the son of a recently deceased serial killer. The same serial killer, in fact, that kidnapped and murdered the real Neil. All he wants is a regular life, a home and a family. He wants to be Neil, and forget he was ever Cameron.

But the deception is getting harder and harder to carry off. . . .

While Alphin doesn't go into graphic detail, she makes it clear that Cameron suffered physical and sexual abuse at the hands of his father for many years. Cameron's own reaction to this is almost more disturbing--he accepts it as normal and expects it from his new family. She also creates realistic and believable reactions, not only for Neil's parents, but for his sister and brother as they all have to work through the family tragedy turned upside-down.

As Cameron adjusts to having a family and people who care about him, his struggle between the desire to keep it and the growing realization that his actions are wrong intensifies. You're not sure until the very last moment which is going to win.

The ending feels just a little deus ex machina, but overall, this is a great book.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think that is a really good summary of that book.
And yes, this is a very good book to read.