4 Long Bright River is about a struggling single mother who is trying to juggle her demanding roles as a mother and police officer with a search for her missing sister It is also about opioid addiction and police corruption Moore navigates all these issues beautifully Some might label this a crime novel, but the characters are why I kept turning the pages She peels away layers of Mickey s past, cracks open a scary world and leaves the reader hoping I would categorize this as literary suspense It has the elements of a police procedural but the writing is so much better than that Mickey is a beat cop walking the mean drug addicted streets of Philadelphia while her sister, Kacey, lives on those very streets as a strung out sex worker The cop watches out for her sister despite their estrangement and becomes alarmed when a number of prostitutes are found murdered Moving between the sisters adolescence and adulthood, this is about broken families, broken hearts and broken people Intricately plotted with richly drawn characters and a vivid sense of place, don t miss this novel reminiscent of Tana French. Two Sisters Travel The Same Streets,though Their Lives Couldn T Be Different Then One Of Them Goes MissingIn A Philadelphia Neighborhood Rocked By The Opioid Crisis, Two Once Inseparable Sisters Find Themselves At Odds One, Kacey, Lives On The Streets In The Vise Of Addiction The Other, Mickey, Walks Those Same Blocks On Her Police Beat They Don T Speak Any, But Mickey Never Stops Worrying About Her Sibling Then Kacey Disappears, Suddenly, At The Same Time That A Mysterious String Of Murders Begins In Mickey S District, And Mickey Becomes Dangerously Obsessed With Finding The Culprit And Her Sister Before It S Too LateAlternating Its Present Day Mystery With The Story Of The Sisters Childhood And Adolescence, Long Bright River Is At Once Heart Pounding And Heart Wrenching A Gripping Suspense Novel That Is Also A Moving Story Of Sisters, Addiction, And The Formidable Ties That Persist Between Place, Family, And Fate The talented Liz Moore writes a powerful, deeply affecting and harrowing account of the human cost of the out of control opoid crisis, gripping not only the Kensington neighbourhood of Philadelphia, but the country as a whole It would be a mistake to go into this multilayered novel as a straightforward crime read, it is so much , the crime aspects hang in the background, but at the forefront is a in depth character driven family drama, the relationship between two sisters, 32 year old single mother and beat PPD police officer, Mickey Fitzgerald, and her younger sibling, Kacey, at the mercy of her drug addiction and a prostitute In a bleak and melancholic narrative, we learn of the sisters troubled childhood and personal history, losing their mother early, being bought up by their grandmother, Gee, unable to give her attention to the girls With only themselves to rely on, the sisters form a strong bond with each other, which comes to be tested in later years, as they forge separate paths from each other, becoming estranged in the process However, Mickey continues to feel deeply connected to Kacey, trying to keep an eye out for her on her patrols, but when she fails to get any sighting of Kacey for some time, she becomes desperately worried, particularly as there is a serial killer targeting women and prostitutes in the area Moore paints a unforgettable human and compassionate picture of economic deprivation, the urban decay with its drug addicts, dealers and drug culture with a thoughtful and pertinent social and political commentary on the scale of the opoid tragedy This is a tough and challenging literary read, you cannot escape the harsh realities of drugs and life on the streets, and the inevitable repercussions on the people, families and communities caught up in it This is a beautifully written, intricate, complex, and compelling novel, about family, sisters, love, corrupt police officers and despite the darkness, heartbreak and sorrow, with the much needed presence of hope Many thanks to Random House Cornerstone for an ARC. Five stars The thing is, this novel takes place in Philadelphia and I live in Philadelphia, so I was predisposed to enthusiasm for Long Bright River Nevertheless, it actually exceeded my high expectations As I mentioned in one of my status updates, it s like Tana French before she got all ponderous Long Bright River does take a bit of time to get going, but it s time well spent, building a world of vivid place and character, and by the time the plot picked up I was fully invested There are a couple twists along the way but nothing cheap, and this novel manages to say a few things about the state of the world while never sacrificing story If you re not as interested in Philadelphia as I am, you may not see your way clear to five whole stars, but if you re looking for a distinctive, page turning police thriller with characters worth rooting for, you can stop looking and just head toward the river.I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway thank you to the publisher My opinions, as always, are my own. 5 Emotional Stars When requesting an ARC copy of this book I didn t even read the synopsis, all I needed to know was that the author is Liz Moore The Unseen World was one of my favorite books in 2017 and I just knew that Long Bright River would be as good of a read, if not better And I was right Once again, Liz Moore wrote a powerful and suspenseful story with unique and relatable characters She explores the very difficult and dark reality of the opioid addiction crisis by following the lives of two sisters, Mickey, a police officer and her younger sister, Kacey, an opioid addict This is an uncomfortable and an emotional read with a close look at human relationships and dynamics within a community where opioid addiction and police corruption takes a front seat This book will leave a long effect on most of its readers, and it will uproot some very difficult and uncomfortable feelings This is one of these books that you do not want to miss.Thank you Edelweiss, Riverhead Books, and the author for providing me with an ARC copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Long Bright River is a slow burn, suspense novel rather than a thriller It is an emotional, heartbreaking story of sister love, drug addiction and forgiveness The story is narrated by Michaela Mickey who is the older better sister Mickey is a cop and worries about Kacey who is a drug addict and hasn t been seen for a few weeks Whilst I normally like books told from only the main character s point of view, in this case I felt like the story would have benefited from another narrator While I enjoyed getting to know Mickey and learning about her relationship with Kacey, I wished in some places the story moved at a faster pace What I appreciated was the riveting portrayal of Philadelphia s drug culture which felt very realistic to me.The story involves a murder mystery as a secondary plotline which makes the read exciting However, I found the mystery hastily solved at the end of the book with some holes in the plot Certain things just didn t make sense to me, but that might just be me liking to have everything ironed out when it comes to solving murders.I d recommend the book to readers who enjoy suspense novels with richly drawn characters and complex family relationships Many thanks to Cornerstone for my review copy in exchange for an honest review Giveaway winner I was so excited to win an ARC of this book, as I had been contemplating making it my BOTM for December when I received the email that I had won a copy The book is nearly 500 pages long, but I devoured it in two days I thought the way Liz Moore wove the seemingly separate threads of police procedural murder and family drama was mesmerizing The protagonist, Mickey, is a single mother, as well as an officer for the Philadelphia PD She is assigned to patrol Kensington, a neighborhood enslaved by addiction Mickey is no stranger to addiction, as her mother died of a drug overdose, her father, also an addict, is thought dead after disappearing, and her once inseparable, but now estranged baby sister, Kasey, is a known user Mickey uses her job as a way to keep tabs on Kasey, and is horrified to learn that Kasey is missing amid a flurry of unsolved murders of women in the Kensington Mickey becomes obsessed with finding Kasey and the killer, as she grows and concerned that Kasey will become the next victim The story is told through chapters labeled Then and Now, which explore Mickey and Kasey s childhood, while also propelling the current murder investigation I like how Moore presents multiple characters as the potential killer I was even fooled for a brief minute in regard to one of the potential suspects More masterful, though, was Mickey s personal journey that runs parallel to the plot I loved Mickey s character, and her struggles with self acceptance spoke to me There are so many twists and turns along the way that I didn t see coming, but that fit beautifully with the overall theme I hate when authors throw twists in just for the sake of being able to advertise, a twist you won t see coming The curve balls thrown at you in Long Bright River are powerful, heartbreaking, but heart wrenchingly believable at the same time In general, I m not a huge fan of police procedurals, but this book won me over, as it is so much It is also an emotional foray into family bonds, addiction, forgiveness, and healing There is a simplicity and grace to with which Moore portrays the lives and struggles of Mickey and Kasey that makes this book unforgettable 5 star read for me Thank you, Penguin Books and Liz Moore, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review Long Bright River is a beautifully written and powerful story about two sisters and the destruction of addiction Mickey and Kacey, daughters of addicts, take two very different paths in life As children, they were inseparable, as adults they are estranged Mickey becomes a cop, Kacey an addict.When young female addicts start being murdered, Mickey fears even for Kacey s life When Mickey discovers that Kacey is missing, she investigates putting her life, her son, and her job in danger Mickey is the narrator She is the good, reliable sister At the same time, she is also self righteous and prideful Her fear of being hurt has caused her to lead a life of isolation With every OD she hears of, she fears she will hear her sister s name called As her walls come down, her deepest and darkest secrets are revealed Her strong facade slowly peels away revealing a scared and hurt woman who has not recovered from the traumas of her childhood.Subtly written about the love between sisters and the destructive nature of addiction, Moore has created characters who are complex, flawed, and broken She doesn t impose any judgment but rather captures the realities of addiction I loved everything about this book It is not easy to read and it made me very uncomfortable and emotional at times The final sentence is disturbing and impactful it brought tears to my eyes The characterization is extremely strong Mickey and Kacey remind me of people I know Moore brings Kensington, a neighborhood in Philadelphia ravaged by poverty and addiction, to life She captures both the devastation and glimmers of hope of the people who inhabit Kensington The strong love for the neighborhood shines through in the characters and highlights the goodness that exists in the darkness People with promise, people dependent and depended upon, people loving and beloved, one after another, in a line, in a river, no fount and no outlet, a long bright river of departed souls I received an ARC of this book from Edelweiss and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. TOP TEN BOOK OF 2019, EVERYONE SHOULD READ THIS BOOK, SO PERTINENT TO OUR TIMES Changed my mind on this one and moved it into the 5 star category the that I thought about it as I wrote this review.This is not a comfortable or easy book to read It highlights the opiod crisis and addiction of all forms It talks about babies born to addicts and the withdrawal that they go through It takes place in a neighborhood in Philadelphia, Kensington, which was once a neighborhood of working class families As the jobs dried up, people chose or were forced to move and there are many abandoned buildings which become homes for those shooting up heroin or dealing and using other drugs I will post a link at the end of my review from an article just released today about the rise of methamphetamine.Back to the story At the heart of the story there are two sisters, Mickey and Kacey orphaned when they were young, losing their mother to an overdose death Their father has not been present in their lives They have been raised by their grandmother, Gee, who barely was able to provide for their needs, shelter and food, while working several jobs There wasn t much love or personal attention shown to the girls and therefore they were extremely close while growing up.Things changed dramatically in high school as Kacey started using drugs The sisters grew apart, Mickey choosing a career as a policewoman and Kacey working temporary jobs to fund her drug habit Mickey has tried to keep an eye on her sister as she was usually in the area that she was patrolling in Kensington.There is a serial killer targeting young women Mickey becomes desperate to find her sister, fearing that she will be the next target She has vanished and no one seems to know where she is She becomes desperate and risks the loss of her job and as she digs deeper into Kacey s life in the last few months and trying to find the killer.Mickey is an extremely interesting and complicated woman She is raising a young son on her own She joined the police force because she wanted to help change her neighborhood and make a difference in people s lives The department doesn t always agree with Mickey s methods and she is not sure who she can trust She has complicated feelings about her grandmother and extended family.This is a multi layered story, extremely well written, fast paced, heartbreaking and yet in the end hopeful The characters are unique, well described and believable I felt my heart breaking at times for people who live on the streets, tortured and controlled by their addictions.I won t give any of the plot away but I do recommend looking at this link from The Philadelphia Inquirer just posted online today The numbers are staggering and will, no doubt, shock many readers as they did me.Here s the link highly recommend this book as it is extremely explanatory and pertinent to our times when the crisis of addiction is all around us I wouldn t call this a police procedural because it is much than that It is a story about humanity, families, sisters, people and cities in crisis, love, forgiveness and hope.This book is set to publish in January 2020.I received an ARC of this novel from publisher through Edelweiss.