The secrets that you keep....will drag you under.
In the later part of the 1970s, two boys.....Larry, who always has his nose in a horror novel and athletic Silas, thrown together by chance, form the fragile kind of friendship that outcasts find, a friendship made even more fragile by the weight of it's being a secret. That kind of pressure can break bonds, or forge them into something lasting.
When Larry takes the girl of his dreams on a date, she is never seen again. His life comes apart, as the ripples of suspicion lay waste to everything he has, including his friendship with Silas, who eventually leaves town to make a life for himself, while Larry finds himself trapped in his hometown, living a solitary existence, held tight in the voracious grasp of secrets.....some of them not his own.
20 years later, Silas returns to become the local constable, and goes out of his way to avoid his former friend....until another girl vanishes. Old scars bleed anew, as Larry is once again the only suspect. And when he is shot in an apparent suicide attempt, his guilt appears certain.
And the bond forged years earlier drives Silas to defend his former friend, uncovering the secrets that shaped both their lives, including those they kept from each other all these years.
Franklin allows the story to unfold at it's own pace, and his incredible grasp of human nature is nothing short of astonishing. Every action, every word of dialogue is pitch perfect, the tale unfolds naturally, nothing is forced to a set point as it winds it's way to the conclusion with the logic/illogic of genuine human interaction.
A masterful work, highly recommended.