Author Desmond P Ryan reviews The Crate, a new novel based on a grizzly Muskoka murder
The Crate is Deborah Levison’s first true-crime novel and is well worth the read. She cleverly weaves both the story of a murder victim that was buried on the family’s lakeside property with her parents’ experiences during the Holocaust in a compelling and very moving way, providing detailed, compassionate insights into both events.
After surviving the Holocaust and all of its horrors, a young Hungarian couple seeks refuge in Canada. They build a new life, have children, and, feeling confident that they have put the terrors of their past behind them, build themselves a cozy little cottage on a lake in Muskoka.
This beautiful retreat – the cottage that becomes emblematic of this family’s victory over the Nazis – is destroyed when a single act of unspeakable violence defiles their sanctuary. A wooden crate, nailed tightly shut and almost hidden from view, is found in the crawl space under the cottage one afternoon.
Nothing could have prepared them for the horror of the crate’s contents – or how the peace and tranquility of their lives would be shattered.
The Crate: An Emotional Account of the Human Experience
The Crate is a beautifully crafted book that provides an emotional account of the lifelong effects of violence on the human experience.
Deborah Levison writes like a pro. The words jump off the page as you tell yourself you’ll only read another chapter before turning off the light. And then, when it’s morning and you finally put The Crate down, your heart will be full of a story you will not forget.
Whether for the deeply personal and heart wrenching account of the Holocaust or for the true crime story of a present-day murder investigation, The Crate is a truly wonderfully written book that reminds us of both how strong and how fragile we all are in the face of evil.
Contributor Desmond P Ryan is author of The Mike O’Shea Crime Fiction Series and The Mary-Margaret Cozy Series. Visit his website at https://realdesmondryan.com.