Review by Eliza
Jupiter’s struggling. As an undercover journalist, she slips into people’s lives and then rips them apart. After falling in love with her last assignment, leading to his presumed death, she falls into a deep depression. After treatment, her boss (and ex) convinces her it’s time to go home and tell the story of the company that once employed her mother, a famous actress who was killed in a horrifying murder.
Jupiter soon suspects her mother’s murder may have been wrapped up a little too neatly. Soon, it’s apparent she has enemies who want her dead, and she frantically tries to unravel the truth before it’s too late.
Title: Found Object | Publisher: Thomas & Mercer | Pub Date:2022-10-18 | Pages: 271 | ISBN13/ASIN: 978-1542036405 | Genre: Thriller | Language: English | Source: NetGalley | Starred Review
Found Object Review
This is the kind of story that hooks you right in from the start. Jupiter’s back story, and the story behind the title Found Object, is original and catchy. And it tells you a lot about Jupiter, her mother, and their relationship, right from the start. Jupiter was always in her mother’s orbit, like millions of people around the globe that idolized the famous actress. While she obviously spent time with her mother, it was like she was just one of many vying for time and attention.
Her relationship with her dad disintegrated after her mother’s death. While it isn’t clear why he sent her away at the beginning of the book, his motivations feed into Jupiter’s suspicions. Nobody really looked at her dad as a suspect. After the murder, he moved into his wife’s house, where she was killed, something Jupiter always found suspicious.
Her suspicions about her dad feed into her actions and motivations throughout. Meanwhile, she’s spending a lot of time with the family that runs Luminescent, a cosmetic company, because she’s doing a feature on the company as they celebrate 100 years in business. Her mother had been the face of their products, and she has misgivings about interacting with them. These people are uber rich, which is why most people would find them odd in the way that really rich people just aren’t like the rest of us. Of course, that raises suspicions about them too.
Then there’s Ian Griffin, who was a cop on the scene the day her mother’s body was found. His first day on the job is one that haunts him, not just because of the gruesome murder, but because of a mistake he made.
Frasier does an excellent job establishing Jupiter as a troubled young woman still reeling from trauma … the trauma of seeing her mother’s body, the trauma of losing a mother she never fully had to herself, the trauma of losing her relationship with her dad, the trauma of the more recent death of her aunt, and now the trauma of the man she thought she loved, whose life she destroyed for her career.
Undercover work suited Jupiter because she was able to escape her life and compartmentalize things. And so she never addressed what was broken in herself, but in her own way kept running from it. Returning to Savannah forces her to deal with doubts and suspicions she’d kept buried for a long time, and address some of her grief.
Without saying anything that will give pieces away, everyone’s motivations check out. By the end, you’ll understand all the major player’s motives clearly. At the same time, Frasier pulls out plenty of surprises along the way that credibly track to information given throughout the story. As one of the best thriller writers out there, Frasier makes crucial details seem like inconsequential nuggets of information. Everything’s a breadcrumb and it tracks through to the end.
Jupiter isn’t an easy character, and that might keep some people from really connecting with her. For me, what stood out about her is how broken she is, and how (like so many people) she tries to use her work to suppress her pain and avoid her problems. I found her credible and relatable. She’s broken … and putting the pieces of your life back together isn’t an easy thing, but it wasn’t long before I was rooting for Jupiter to have a breakthrough and find some happiness.
Consumers needing content warnings are urged to check out Found Object’s page on Does the Dog die by clicking this link: Found Object (Book, 2022) – DoesTheDogDie.com