Mystic River by Denis Lehane
Considering how much I enjoyed Shutter Island, I decided to order another book by Lehane, and as much as I want to read The Given Day, I'm not willing to pay for the hardcover. Mystic River is probably his most famous due to the movie which I never saw (not big on Eastwood, what can I say?).
Actually, now that I've read the book I'm really curious to see the movie. However, I couldn't quite remember who all was cast in the film, so I thought Penn was Sean Devine, the cop, not the former thief and father of the victim. Also after seeing which actresses portray the wives, I almost think I would have put them in the opposite roles - of course, I haven't seen their portrayals and they are both very talented actresses (Laura Linney and Rebecca Gay Harden).
All three men, Sean Devine, Jimmy Markum and Dave Boyle were rather well-developed, though the focus definitely seemed to be more on Sean and Jimmy. Lehane threw in a few red herrings but while I've never seen the movie I vaguely remembered hearing about certain aspects of the ending so they didn't generally throw me off too much.
Even though I vaguely knew what was going to happen, the book was still riveting enough where I wanted to know what was going to happen and couldn't put it down. I haven't really gone into too much detail about the story, possibly because I just assume that the movie came out recently enough for everyone to know the basics. Even with that, however, I was surprised: I knew that all these childhood friends are brought together by Jimmy's daughter's murder but I'd thought his daughter was much younger than the nineteen years she actually was in the novel.