The Night Swim by Megan Goldin

OIP (11)

The Night Swim is from the author of my absolute favorite book last year, The Escape Room and Goldin once again does not disappoint!

Rachel Krall is a true-crime podcaster whose next season’s episodes will be broadcast from a small town where everybody knows everybody.  It is a rape case and Rachel will be in court and reporting to her fans on the daily testimony.

The accused is a college boy who is a talented swimmer, perhaps heading to the Olympics.  The accuser is a high school girl he saw at a party and decided to have sex with in an alleged contest he was having with his roommate as to who could sleep with the most girls in a month.  He insists the sex was consensual.  She says she repeatedly told him to stop.

But along with the trial, which has the town divided, Rachel is getting notes from a woman named Heather who insists she wrote to Rachel to try and get her to investigate the death of her sister Jenny twenty-five years earlier in the same town.  Her sister was found dead in the water.  The medical examiner ruled it a suicide.  Heather insists it was murder because her sister was a strong swimmer.  It never added up and Heather and her mother could never get any answers.

Heather claims there was some kind of cover-up and knowing Rachel was going to be in town for the rape trial pleads with her to look into what happened to her sister Jenny years ago when she went for that night swim.  Through letters to Rachel, scared to meet her in person, Heather chronicles her and Jenny’s last summer together before Jenny’s shocking untimely death and perhaps what actually may have happened.

As Rachel begins to ask questions about Jenny’s death, what she discovers is that no one wants to talk about her.  Jenny, whose family was poor, was not looked well upon by her high school classmates. Also, at the time of her death there was a horrific car accident which had taken the lives of two of their classmates. Most were focused on that tragedy. But curiously there seems to be no paper trail of this young girl’s death.  Why?

Questions also arise in the rape trial.  Something does not feel right to Rachel, but she can’t quite put her finger on what’s bothering her.  Then the accuser breaks down on the witness stand and may be unable to complete her testimony.  If she does not get back on the stand, there is a good chance the charges will be dropped for lack of evidence.

Goldin hits it out of the park with another chilling psychological thriller, an unbelievably startling ending in which the story lines both explode! The fluidity of the writing and the telling of each account makes you not want to get to the end, but curiosity as to the conclusion will keep you up at night until you know all the answers.

I can’t wait for her next book!

Thank you #NetGalley #St.Martin’sPress #MeganGoldin #TheNightSwim for the advanced copy.

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