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Adrienne Morris

Why She Left Us

Why She Left Us - David Dennis Why She Left Us by David Dennis is a meandering mystery. It’s a composite of the baseness of human nature--and also its virtues. The story of the star-crossed lovers, Betsy and Wayne, is told discontinuously by 5 narrators and in the form of diary entries. This unique narrative method requires attention be paid to who’s diary you are reading and to the date of each entry, but this minimal effort is worth it. I don’t want to give away too much of the story since that’s the meat of this psychological chiller, so I’ll just say as a love story and psychological twister, it works; it’s sweet, disturbing and plausible. The cast of characters in this ill-fated love story are: Lucille, the bitter divorced aunt; Ellen, a borderline sociopath; Monica, high achieving and mentally unstable; Carl, Monica’s pompous jackass of a husband; and Betsy, a tenderhearted naïf searching for love and worth. With so many perspectives, we can never be sure whose versions of events are genuine--everyone has their own motives and baggage.The writing was flawless and that leads me to my only criticism--it was a little too well written for diary entries, especially for the diary of a 16-year-old girl. Why She Left Us will knot your stomach with the tale of these damaged people and their wretched lives.