Ill Will by Dan Chaon [in Library Journal]
At 15 hours to find out whodunit (you’ll probably guess early), howdunit (you’ll need to wait for it), whydunit (well…? no spoilers!), we’re talking commitment. A full cast (why don’t producers reveal who’s who?), including veterans Ari Fliakos and Edoardo Ballerini, with Scott Aiello, Michael Crouch, and Alex McKenna, keep the pace brisk, even as the characters ruminate a bit too long on unnecessary details.
Impatience aside, the premise is intriguing: Dustin Tillman, a 40-something psychologist on suburban cruise control, is jolted by the news that older brother Rusty has been DNA-exonerated from his life sentence after 30 years in prison. Already a troubled teen when the Tillman family adopted him, Rusty was convicted of the gruesome murders of their parents, an aunt, and an uncle – and now he’s getting out.
Meanwhile, current reports of murder have been haunting Dustin on the job as one of his clients, a former cop, presents a hard-to-ignore theory that a serial killer is targeting college boys. Caught between past and present crimes, Dustin’s life heads toward implosion.
Verdict: Despite an aurally convincing cast, Chaon’s (Among the Missing) latest proves to be more meandering mess than mesmerizing mystery.