#BookBeginnings The Likeness by Tana French

Let’s take a look at The Likeness by Tana French for Book Beginnings on Fridays.

Book Beginnings is a fun meme hosted by Rose City Reader blog. To participate, share the first sentence or so of a novel you are reading and your thoughts about it. When you are finished, add your URL to the Book Beginnings page linked above. Hope to see you there!



The Likeness by Tana French

(*Amazon Affiliate link)

Summary:  In this follow-up to In The Woods, Detective Cassie Maddox is no longer with the Dublin Murder squad. When a young woman whose name is Alexandra Madison is killed, however, the squad calls her in. They realize that the victim looks like Cassie and Alexandra Madison is one of Cassie’s past undercover aliases. While she searches for the killer, Cassie must figure out whether she was the intended target.

First Sentence of The Likeness Prologue:

Some nights, if I’m sleeping on my own, I still dream about Whitethorn House. In the dream it’s always spring, cool fine light with a late afternoon haze. I climb the worn stone steps and knock on the door — that great, brass knocker, going black with age and heavy enough to startle you every time — and an old woman with an apron and a deft, uncompromising face lets me in.

First Sentence Chapter 1:

This is Lexie Madison’s story, not mine.



I read Tana French’s In The Woods for a reading challenge (review) and enjoyed the elegant writing, so I’m eager to delve into this one. It feels like one of those books that deserves to be read at leisure over a long, quiet weekend. Not that I’ll get one of those.

One thing I am struggling with is that I have a good friend named Cassie. I keep visualizing her when I read the name of the character in the book and they aren’t much alike. Have you ever read a book with the name of a close friend, family member, or even your own name? Was it difficult?

What do you think?


  1. Karen

    I’ve never heard a face described as “deft.” That seemed odd.

    Hope you enjoy “The Likeness.” “In The Woods” was very good!

    • Roberta

      I pulled out my tattered paper dictionary and it says an older meaning of deft is “gentle.”

  2. Yvonne

    This book sounds like something I would like. I’ll have to add it to my list. Great choice!

  3. Laurel-Rain Snow

    I’ve been meaning to read this author, and have the first book…still unread. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Yvonne@FictionBooks

    I knew I had a couple of Tana French’s books on my shelves and after a little searching (my copies are from way back in the original 2006 & 2008 publishing and hence have the original cover art), I have found both ‘In The Woods’ and ‘The Likeness’, which have now been moved strategically near to the top of my TBR pile!

    I can’t recall reading a book recently, where any of the characters are named after friends or family, but it probably wouldn’t have really registered with me if I had. Now that I am conscious of the possibility, I shall probably come across one really soon, so that’s another little secret I can share in some of my regular meme posts.

    Thanks for sharing your book and i hope that you enjoyed your weekend 🙂


    • Roberta

      Seems to be a trend that Tana French remains unread. I wonder why. Maybe because sometimes her narrators are unreliable and unusual things happen to characters, which can make reading harder going?

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