Merrimon Book Reviews

From Merrimon Book Reviews
Die, My Love
Die, My Love by Kathryn Casey
by Kathryn Casey

In DIE, MY LOVE, Kathryn Casey examines the murder of college professor Fred Jablin.  After a short and chilling description of the crime itself, Kathryn Casey describes the marriage between Fred Jablin and his wife Piper, a pretty Texas lawyer who seemed to have several people wrapped around her fingers.  A bitter custody battle left her determined to get her children back at any cost.  The last half of the book details the investigators' tireless painstaking efforts to track down the murderer and unravel the lies and misdirection.  Was Piper indeed the murderer?  How does her look-alike sister fit into the scenario?  Who was where and could the investigators prove it?

In its presentation of the Jablin marriage, DIE, MY LOVE leaves no doubt as to the impetus behind the murder.  Whether or not Piper or her sister did it, from the very beginning, the author reveals the contradictions between Piper's image and the reality behind the image and her ability to manipulate others.  As this split between fantasy and reality becomes more and more evident, the reader catches a glimpse of her psychology.  Most chilling is Piper's image of herself as a loving mother who will do anything for her children while her actions focus more on herself with an inability to see her children outside the obsession.  The investigation itself is perhaps the most intriguing section for those interested in investigative techniques.  Texas and Virginia law enforcement join together in a complex case that tracks phone records and all sorts of minute details.  Kathryn Casey does a very good job in tracking the intricate details without bogging the reader down in tedious minutiae.

First published several years ago in 2007, DIE, MY LOVE has glimpses of the writer a reader sees in Kathryn Casey's later works.  In her descriptions of the main parties involved, the author provokes an emotional response, though not as strong as one sees in her later works.  Piper's conception of motherhood sends chills down a reader.  While I would recommend this book to true crime readers based on the case itself, I would recommend one of Kathryn Casey's newer books like SHATTERED more, particularly as an entry into her writing.  DIE, MY LOVE is written more in a journalistic style, whereas, in SHATTERED, the author combines reporting with a more highly developed writing style to produce a more powerful account in which readers are taken more inside the crime and the people involved.  In SHATTERED, the victim of the crime stands out more, and the author pinpoints the twistedness of the crime, not in gory details, but in images of the small moments.  While DIE, MY LOVE is fascinating for its depiction of the dynamics within Piper's family and for the details of this particular crime, quite simply, the writer's style has clearly grown tremendously in the past few years.  As such, at this later date, I would recommend DIE, MY LOVE for readers already acquainted with the author's work or readers interested in this case.  Newcomers to this author should start with her newest works.  While I enjoyed this book and plan to read more by this author, the author's more developed writing style in SHATTERED makes that book truly awesome.  DIE, MY LOVE shows only the beginning strokes of that style.

Publisher: Harper True Crime (April 24, 2007)

Reviewed by Merrimon, Merrimon Book Reviews
Merrimon Book Reviews

Custom Search

© Merrimon Crawford  2011 All Rights Reserved