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Synopsis: Former bar singer and Buddhist meditator Caitlin Shaughnessy, a Canadian journalist, discovers that Inez, a traumatized young Mayan woman from Guatemala, has killed Dr. Jerry Simpson, her partner of many years. Caitlin struggles to understand what happened, and why. In the process, she confronts her own demons, as well as the innocence and wonder within Inez which seem to belie the young woman’s violent actions.
Review: When I picked up The Girl in a Box I was not really sure what to expect. Most titles give an idea of what the book is about but this book is really literal when it comes to the title. The author clearly did a lot of research when choosing a location for her book to be based in. The book starts off with Jerry, and how he found the girl in the box, Inez. Jerry has a long history with the country of Guatemala, in fact it’s where he met Caitlin, the woman he loves. The parts where Jerry is on this trip are very sad to read, and unfortunately probably very accurate.
Inez is kept in a wooden box, away from her family’s home, and she is kept in this box with a chain and a lock. It is clear she is a disturbed girl, most likely with some kind of mental issue that her family just doesn’t know how to treat; and so they lock her up for her own well being. Ultimately Jerry brings Inez home with him back to Canada to live with him, as a way for him to help her. The situation ends as tragically as it began. Inez kills Jerry.
The story is mostly told from Caitlin’s point of view. As the woman who loved Jerry, and had even come to bond with Inez, she is shocked and traumatized at the sudden and violent death of her partner. This turn of events for Caitlin causes her to search for answers as well as take a look at her and Jerry’s past.
This book is definitely a book for people who are looking for psychological mystery. Most mysteries that involve murder involve a lot of build up into finding out who the killer is and then catching them and bringing them to justice. This book is not about that, the killer is known from the beginning and is tried in a court of law. This book is about the inner workings of people’s lives, motivations, and a search for truth. I enjoyed the journey and the search for what happened, even though it dealt with very sad subject matter and pulled at your heart strings when the reader reads it.