Well, Harm Done, is still a page-turner and not once did I not enjoy the novel. It was a bit tepid when stacked up against the wonderful, A Speaker Of Mandarin, and earlier Ruth Rendell Inspector Wexford fiction. Nonetheless, a lukewarm Ruth Rendell offering is worth a thousand mediocre mystery bestsellers we could all name. So, dear readers and fellow fans, dive in anytime to Harm Done for a truly decent read.
The explanation for two of the disappearing girls was touching. What would you do in Vicky's situation?
I even liked the part about the lost raincoat. The author has a nice, typically English sense of humor.
Rendell is one of the best writers around...in any genre.
However, the central plot about the missing little girl is what captured me. The story that Ruth Rendell tells of the effects of domestic violence on an entire family is chilling and heartbreaking. Not only does the wife and mother suffer extreme mental and physical abuse but the two children remaining in the home are clearly adversely affected. The effects of domestic violence will be felt in this family long after their escape from abuse. Rendell builds an atmosphere of suspense and dread that can only be a small reflection of the terror of living in such a situation, but the empathetic reader will be much affected. There can be no real happy ending to this story, at least not immediately. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys well drawn and believable characters, especially that of Inspector Wexford who is faced with a real moral dilemma.