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I have to admit, my feelings toward Lost Souls are a bit complicated. I almost didn’t post a recommendation for it because of the feelings the book stirred up in me. But then I realized that those feelings are most likely what the author, Michael Collins, was going for. Which makes this a very successful book indeed.

You might be wondering about what I mean when I say “the feelings” that were stirred up. To sum it up, this novel was a bit of an emotional roller coaster for me. Depending on what was happening, I switched between anger, pity, sympathy, frustration, confusion, and even a bit of relieved-but-hesitant happiness. Honestly, I don’t know if I’ve ever read something that made my emotions go all over the place like that – especially in less than 300 pages.

The reason for my range of emotions was the characters. I just couldn’t believe some of the things that they did and said – and felt a bit relieved when they finally did something that I thought was good for them.

But I also really want to recommend this book because of the plot. It’s one of those plots that keeps you on your toes, because you’re not quite expecting what happens next. Yes, some parts were a bit predictable, but others were a complete surprise. The ending, somehow, was a combination of both; I had anticipated part of what happened, but the rest was something that I didn’t at all see coming.

Goodreads summary

With such novels as The Resurrectionists, Michael Collins has galvanized his reputation as a master of the literary thriller. In Lost Souls, he embarks upon his most ambitious project yet, offering a harrowing portrait of a stricken American community.

On Halloween night, a small midwestern town is traumatized by what appears to be a hit- and-run accident. But the mayor and chief of police conspire to divert the investigation away from the prime suspect, a local high school football hero, leaving the beleaguered police officer who discovered the body to uncover the truth behind the cover-up. Full of the author’s trademark psychological intensity, this fast-paced tale is Michael Collins at his page-turning best.