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We Begin at the End
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Published:
Henry Holt and Co. 2021
Status:
Checked Out
Description

Winner of the Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel from the Crime Writers' Association (UK)
Winner for Best International Crime Fiction from Australian Crime Writers Association
An Instant New York Times Bestseller


"A vibrant, engrossing, unputdownable thriller that packs a serious emotional punch. One of those rare books that surprise you along the way and then linger in your mind long after you have finished it."
—Kristin Hannah, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Four Winds


Right. Wrong. Life is lived somewhere in between.

Duchess Day Radley is a thirteen-year-old self-proclaimed outlaw. Rules are for other people. She is the fierce protector of her five-year-old brother, Robin, and the parent to her mother, Star, a single mom incapable of taking care of herself, let alone her two kids.
Walk has never left the coastal California town where he and Star grew up. He may have become the chief of police, but he's still trying to heal the old wound of having given the testimony that sent his best friend, Vincent King, to prison decades before. And he's in overdrive protecting Duchess and her brother.
Now, thirty years later, Vincent is being released. And Duchess and Walk must face the trouble that comes with his return. We Begin at the End is an extraordinary novel about two kinds of families—the ones we are born into and the ones we create.

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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
03/02/2021
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781250759672
ASIN:
B0893TV1CT
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Chris Whitaker. (2021). We Begin at the End. Henry Holt and Co.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Chris Whitaker. 2021. We Begin At the End. Henry Holt and Co.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Chris Whitaker, We Begin At the End. Henry Holt and Co, 2021.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Chris Whitaker. We Begin At the End. Henry Holt and Co, 2021.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
Feb 26, 2021 13:09:32
Date Updated:
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fullDescription

Winner of the Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel from the Crime Writers' Association (UK)
Winner for Best International Crime Fiction from Australian Crime Writers Association
An Instant New York Times Bestseller


"A vibrant, engrossing, unputdownable thriller that packs a serious emotional punch. One of those rare books that surprise you along the way and then linger in your mind long after you have finished it."
—Kristin Hannah, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Four Winds


Right. Wrong. Life is lived somewhere in between.

Duchess Day Radley is a thirteen-year-old self-proclaimed outlaw. Rules are for other people. She is the fierce protector of her five-year-old brother, Robin, and the parent to her mother, Star, a single mom incapable of taking care of herself, let alone her two kids.
Walk has never left the coastal California town where he and Star grew up. He may have become the chief of police, but he's still trying to heal the old wound of having given the testimony that sent his best friend, Vincent King, to prison decades before. And he's in overdrive protecting Duchess and her brother.
Now, thirty years later, Vincent is being released. And Duchess and Walk must face the trouble that comes with his return. We Begin at the End is an extraordinary novel about two kinds of families—the ones we are born into and the ones we create.

reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: James Patterson
      • content: "We Begin at the End was recommended by a friend, who recommended to a friend, who recommended it to my wife, who gushed about it to me. It is that kind of very emotional, well-written, unforgettable story that gets people gushing--including me."
      • premium: False
      • source: People (Book of the Week)
      • content: "Cape Haven, Calif., is a pretty town of broken souls. Its chief cop clings to the past as his body fails. A drunk former beauty can barely care for the kids she loves, and her fierce 13-year-old daughter Duchess Day Radley imagines herself an outlaw willing to do anything to defend her little brother."
      • premium: False
      • source: Good Morning America
      • content: "A heartbreaking, page-turning, swashbuckling thriller."
      • premium: False
      • source: The Washington Post
      • content: "What is new is the protagonist's anguished, gorgeous voice, filled with rage and tenderness."
      • premium: False
      • source: O, The Oprah Magazine
      • content: "Ravishing, pulse-raising suspense...."
      • premium: False
      • source: The New York Times Book Review
      • content: "A moving, propulsive story."
      • premium: False
      • source: Jane Harper, New York Times bestselling author of The Dry and The Survivors
      • content: "A beautifully written mystery, packed with unforgettable characters. An intricately woven portrait of small-town intrigue where old and new sins collide."
      • premium: False
      • source: B. A. Paris, bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors
      • content: "Couldn't put it down. Incredible writing, characters so brilliantly drawn they jump off the page. Outstanding."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        Starred review from January 11, 2021
        Set largely in 2005, this superb thriller from Whitaker (Tall Oaks) examines the repercussions of a fatal accident decades earlier on the residents of Cape Haven, a tourist town on the California coast. At 15, Vincent King was sent to a men’s prison for hitting and killing seven-year-old Sissy Radley while joyriding. Now, 30 years later, Vincent is being released. His childhood friend, Walker
        —Cape Haven’s police chief—hopes that Vincent, and the town, can finally begin healing. But soon after Vincent’s return, Star Radley—a single mother and Sissy’s older sister—is found murdered in her home. With Vincent as the prime suspect, Chief Walker and Duchess, Star’s 13-year-old daughter and self-proclaimed outlaw, each launch their respective quests for the truth. Powered by extraordinarily deep character development and an impressively intricate plot, this novel is simultaneously a murder mystery, a love story, and a heartbreaking tragedy. The existential agony is palpable throughout, but so, too, is the hope at the end. Whitaker has upped his game with this emotionally charged page-turner.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        March 12, 2021

        When Vincent King accidentally killed young Sissy Radley, he was convicted of murder and, as a 15-year-old, sent to a prison for adult men. Vincent's life wasn't the only one ruined; his best friend, Walk, and his girlfriend, Star, Sissy's older sister, were also affected. Thirty years later, Walk is the ineffectual chief of police of Cape Haven, the small coastal California town he never left. He looks after Star, who is struggling with addiction, and Star's two children (whose biological father is out of the picture): 13-year-old Duchess, who is tough as nails and is the main caretaker of her sibling, five-year-old Robin. When Vincent is released from prison and returns to Cape Haven, it's a changed landscape. Unscrupulous developer Dickie Darke is gobbling up the coastal homes and messing with Star and her family; Walk hides a secret about his health. Then Star is killed, and Vincent is accused of her murder. He refuses to defend himself, so Walk sets out to prove his friend's innocence. Meanwhile, the Radley children are sent far away to live with relatives, but Duchess knows that Darke will come after her. VERDICT Stubbornly loyal Walk and worldly-wise Duchess are complex, well-developed characters, each searching for truth and justice. Reminiscent of Charles Portis's True Grit, Whitaker's (Tall Oaks) literary thriller will satisfy fans of modern Westerns and readers who like strong heroines.--Liz French, Library Journal

        Copyright 2021 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: School Library Journal
      • content:

        May 1, 2021

        Gr 9 Up-A town that has witnessed a lot of tragedy is home to the people who are still picking up the pieces. Thirteen-year-old Duchess Day Radley, a self-proclaimed outlaw, takes on the responsibilities of raising herself and her younger brother, Robin, while her mother struggles with addiction and tries to live a life that doesn't continually echo the pain of her sister's murder nearly three decades earlier. Now, the convicted killer is set to return home to a place that still hasn't healed, and the ripple effects of each characters' decisions cause more and more misfortune. The fully developed characters in this novel are raw, real, and relatable; Whitaker makes it easy for readers to recognize someone they know. Duchess's story is one of resilience, growing up in a less than desired environment, and her foul-mouthed outbursts and Robin's pure heart provide some levity to a heavy thriller. VERDICT Recommended for high school libraries that need updated coming-of-age stories or less shiny characters full of grit. Cultivated readers will be able to handle the dual narrative along with some mature content and language.-Samantha Hull, Ephrata H.S., PA

        Copyright 2021 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        Starred review from January 15, 2021
        A police chief who never grew up and a girl who never had a childhood try to solve the murder of someone they love. A tiny, picturesque town on the California coast is an emotional prison for the characters of this impressive, often lyrical thriller. Its two main characters are a cop with an improbable na�vet� and a child too old for her years. Walk (short for Walker, his last name) is chief of the two-person police department in Cape Haven and a native son. He's kind and conscientious and haunted by a crime that occurred when he was a teenager, the death of a girl named Sissy Radley, whose body Walk discovered. Duchess Radley is that child's niece, the daughter of Star Radley, the town's doomed beauty. Most men lust after Star, including several of her neighbors and perhaps a sinister real estate developer named Dickie Darke. But Star is a substance abuser in a downward spiral, and her fatherless kids, Duchess and her younger brother, Robin, get, at best, Star's benign neglect. Walk, who's known Star since they were kids, is the family's protector. As the book begins, all of them are coming to terms with the return to town of Vincent King. He's Walk's former best friend, Star's former boyfriend, and he's served a 30-year prison term for the death of Sissy (and that of a man he killed in prison). Someone will end up dead, and the murder mystery structures the book. But its core is Duchess, a rage-filled girl who is her brother's tender, devoted caretaker, a beauty like her mother, and a fist-swinging fighter who introduces herself as "the outlaw Duchess Day Radley." Whitaker crafts an absorbing plot around crimes in the present and secrets long buried, springing surprises to the very end. A fierce 13-year-old girl propels this dark, moving thriller.

        COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

popularity
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Winner of the Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel from the Crime Writers' Association (UK)
Winner for Best International Crime Fiction from Australian Crime Writers Association
An Instant New York Times Bestseller


"A vibrant, engrossing, unputdownable thriller that packs a serious emotional punch. One of those rare books that surprise you along the way and then linger in your mind long after you have finished it."
—Kristin Hannah, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Four Winds


Right. Wrong. Life is lived somewhere in between.

Duchess Day Radley is a thirteen-year-old self-proclaimed outlaw. Rules are for other people. She is the fierce protector of her five-year-old brother, Robin, and the parent to her mother, Star, a single mom incapable of taking care of herself, let alone her two kids.
Walk has never left the coastal California town where he and Star...

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      • value: Golden Dagger for Fiction Award
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Henry Holt and Co.
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      • description: Fiction / Literary
      • code: FIC022020
      • description: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Police Procedural
      • code: FIC066000
      • description: Fiction / Small Town & Rural