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I Love You More: A Novel Hardcover – June 17, 2014
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Oliver Lane was a busy family man. He had three families going, with growing children (and one in the womb) from three different wives. One day, Oliver is found, his scheming head shot off, on the porch of his summer house on an island on the North Carolina coast. His 12-year-old daughter discovers his body. And this girl, Picasso Lane, is the first point of view in Murphy’s debut mystery. Picasso is probably the most important narrator, but the point of view switches from her to that of Kyle Kennedy, the police detective on the case, to that of the wives themselves, and even to the ghost of Lane at one point. This device is most satisfying when it comes to the perspectives of Picasso and Kennedy; the wives’ chapters are a bit ungainly, like a Greek chorus dragged in. The changing of perspectives adds a great deal to the mystery of the man himself and ofhis and the wives’ tangled relationships. A bit overwrought, but good suspense and a nicely creepy tone throughout. --Connie Fletcher
Praise for I Love You More:
“Picasso Lane’s father is murdered at the family’s summer house. The 12-year-old girl’s mother is the prime suspect. Then two more wives, and several more children, emerge. Many secrets are revealed. Suspense and high drama.”
—New York Daily News
"A chilling and beautifully written debut from Seattleite Jennifer Murphy . . . Someone fatally shot a charismatic lawyer, Oliver Lane, at the summerhouse he shared with his wife, Diana, and their whimsically named daughter Picasso. Turns out that Oliver had two other wives, and all three had reason to kill him . . . Murphy has her own strong, self-assured voice and a knack for keeping us unsettled and off-kilter."
—Adam Woog, Seattle Times
“I Love You More layers lies upon deceit, then peels them away like veils . . . Author Jennifer Murphy tells this eerie tale from multiple points of view, and the detective’s hard-boiled cynicism contrasts with the Wives, who speak as one, as well as Picasso’s innocence and precocity. I Love You More is a genuine whodunit that will keep you guessing, and the North Carolina setting may find you craving a glass of sweet tea and porch swing on which to lose yourself while reading.”
“A wildly talented Seattle writer who regularly roams the cafés and shops of Queen Anne and Magnolia, has written her debut novel . . . One man, three wives, the perfect murder. A novel told from different points of view, this perfect summer read has enough twists and turns to keep the plot fresh . . . This one will keep you up past your bedtime.”
—Queen Anne & Magnolia News
“Intriguing . . . Murphy ably weaves together the characters' alibis and histories, building a fast-paced and entertaining story of lies and love, vengeance and protection. She also deftly evokes small town life, with its swirling rumors, tree-lined streets, and Dairy Queen as the hub of all preteen gossip and activity. I Love You More is juicy summer read that's great for a day when you're lounging around the pool, or (if you're feeling bold) for when you're packing to head to your beach house.” —Rachel Wagner, Everyday eBook
"Jennifer Murphy’s début thriller is as quirky and devious as its characters. She keeps readers dangling until the very end, and then hits them with yet another unexpected twist." —New Books Picks, Good Housekeeping
“I Love You More layers lies upon deceit, then peels them away like veils . . . Author Jennifer Murphy tells this eerie tale from multiple points of view, and the detective’s hard-boiled cynicism contrasts with the Wives, who speak as one, as well as Picasso’s innocence and precocity. I Love You More is a genuine whodunit that will keep you guessing, and the North Carolina setting may find you craving a glass of sweet tea and porch swing on which to lose yourself while reading.” —Bookpage
"When lawyer Oliver Lane is shot to death at the family’s summer rental on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, his wife appears a likely suspect. Then two other women who claim to be married to Oliver come forward, and the investigation takes several unusual turns. . . Told from multiple points of view . . . Murphy examines the periods before and after the murder while providing tantalizing glimpses into the minds of a manipulative sociopath and his targets. . . Her fluent style and descriptive language produce a very readable story with well-articulated characters. A thoughtfully written, original and entertaining exploration of events ignited by love and lies."
“Murphy’s debut, an absorbing coming-of-age story, revolves around the murder of Oliver Lane, shot dead at his beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. The victim had three wives, starting with his first and legal wife, Diana, a true Southern lady and the mother of his word-obsessed 12-year-old daughter, Picasso… Readers slowly piece together the truth through the eyes of Picasso, the detective, and the wives. Solid, well-defined characters.”
"Oliver Lane was a busy family man. He had three families going, with growing children (and one in the
womb) from three different wives. One day, Oliver is found, his scheming head shot off, on the porch of
his summer house on an island on the North Carolina coast. His 12-year-old daughter discovers his body.
And this girl, Picasso Lane, is the first point of view in Murphy’s debut mystery. . . Tangled relationships. . . good
suspense and a nicely creepy tone throughout."
“In Jennifer Murphy’s I Love You More, betrayal and anger overwhelm love and reason. Murphy infuses this drama with a throbbing ‘gotta know’ that forced this reader to say goodbye to sleep.”
—Randy Susan Meyers, bestselling author of The Comfort of Lies
“Jennifer Murphy's polyvocal novel is not only an achievement in narrative control and suspense, but a mystery that is as much about its characters' inner lives as its gripping plot. I Love You More is a terrifically ambitious debut.”
—Teddy Wayne, author of The Love Song of Jonny Valentine
“When I really, truly love a book, I feel a kind of deep excitement-envy-admiration that verges on awe. My requirements: the story must make me forget everything but it, and the writing must be lean, evocative, and powerful. I Love You More is all of these things. I really, truly love it so much that I wish I’d written it myself. In its pages, Jennifer Murphy deftly balances light and dark, humanity and heartlessness, love and murder, and creates characters so well drawn you feel as if you know them, as well as a mystery so compelling you can barely look away from the page. Stunning.”
—Jennifer Niven, author of Velva Jean Learns to Drive
“Sexy, smart, and thoroughly addictive, I Love You More is a thrilling work of fiction, so deftly plotted you can’t put it down. This is the kind of book you’ll stay up late for, the kind you’ll recommend to everyone you know. It’s that good. Jennifer Murphy’s novel explores the reckless intensity of love in all its incarnations, how desire shifts into possession, and how the most dangerous lies are those we tell ourselves. I Love You More is that rare and wonderful thing – a masterful debut.”
—Dawn Tripp, author of Game of Secrets
"A book I couldn't put down. A literary mystery that deftly uses multiple points of view to reveal secrets, betrayals and the complications of the human heart."
—Ann Hood, author of The Knitting Circle and The Obituary Writer
Top customer reviews
Like the two other "wives" that Oliver has been hiding: Julie and Bert.
But when Detective Kyle Kennedy meets with each of the women, they both plead ignorance of the existence of the others.
What did they really know? And what is Diana's daughter Picasso hiding?
I Love You More: A Novel is narrated by multiple characters: Picasso, Detective Kyle Kennedy, and a "we" voice that speaks for the wives. There is also a section with Oliver's voice.
We begin to discover just who knew what and when, and we also enjoy getting to know Picasso in her coming-of-age journey. After some time has passed, and when the women meet for a reunion, we learn that nothing is as it seems, and that sometimes we keep secrets from ourselves.
Set in North Carolina, the story takes the reader into the cities all around the area, and we see firsthand what the characters' lives looked like, before and after.
I liked that Picasso and her dad had a special relationship, one that focused on a mutual interest in words and their meanings, as well as the forming of new words. A skill that Picasso takes with her, one that helps her navigate her life. Something that will help her heal after all the secrets come to light. I enjoyed this story, but I didn't love it. Therefore, 4.0 stars.
There are so many twists and turns leaving you wondering how is this going to end. As the book moves forward, you don't know what to expect next. Things you'd never dream of would suddenly change everything. The author has you hooked from the first chapter to the last with a surprise ending.
Never have I read a book with such a well developed storyline. I recommend this book to you feeling you will thoroughly enjoy it. Look forward to reading more by Jennifer Murphy.
This is a really good 'whodunit' novel. I don't always like them because often you know way to early who was the killer and the writing isn't that great. Here though, the writing is very good and the characters are really interesting. They all have distinct personalities and quirks that the reader wants to get to know. And the husband is just plain creepy! Who doesn't find a well-written sociopath interesting to read about? And at least for me, I didn't figure out who did it until near the very end.
A very good option for those looking for a thriller/mystery read.
Most recent customer reviews
A very precocious smart child witnesses her father's murder.
A surprise ending ...sort of :)
Then a murdered husband
I came across this book through my library. It was a blind date book.Read more