Review: The Other Girl by Erica Spindler


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Release date: August 22, 2017

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press 

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Blurb: 

From the NYT bestselling author comes a chilling new thriller about a ritualistic murder of a college professor that sends a small town cop back into the trauma she thought she’d put behind her.


Officer Miranda Rader of the Hammond PD in Louisiana is known for her honesty, integrity, and steady hand in a crisis—but that wasn’t always so. Miranda comes from Jasper, just south of Hammond, a place about the size of a good spit on a hot day, and her side of the tracks was the wrong one. She’s worked hard to leave the girl she used to be behind and earn respect in her position as an officer.


However, when Miranda and her partner are called to investigate the murder of one of the town’s most beloved college professors, they’re unprepared for the gruesomeness of the scene. This murder is unlike any they’ve ever investigated, and just when Miranda thinks she’s seen the worst of it, she finds a piece of evidence that chills her to the core: a faded newspaper clipping about a terrible night from her long-buried past. Then another man turns up dead, this one a retired cop, and not just any cop—Clint Wheeler, the cop who took her statement that night. Two murders, two very different men, two killings that on the surface had nothing in common—except Miranda. 14 years ago.


And when her fingerprints turn up at the scene of the first murder, Miranda once again finds herself under the microscope, her honesty and integrity doubted, her motivations questioned. Alone again, the trust of her colleagues shattered, Miranda must try to trust the instincts she’s pushed down for so long, and decide what’s right—before it’s too late. 

Review: 

Somehow Erica Spindler has stayed off my radar before now and looking at her back catalogue I’m not quite sure how?! She writes the exact type of books that pull me in and the premise of The Other Girl has many of the elements I love, I’ll definitely be reading more of her work in the future. 

I totally devoured this book, I would’ve easily read it in one sitting but had to force myself to put it down because it was so late when I started it. It was one of those effortless reads where the pages just keep flying by and before you know it you’ve finished! There are some flashbacks to 2002 and a night where Miranda had a terrible ordeal but the bulk is told in the present. The pacing was spot on, things move quickly and I was so eager to find out what had happened previously and what would happen next. Here’s what’s weird, at least for me. I predicted like ninety nine percent of the twists and instead of being annoyed and disappointed like I usually would be I wasn’t bothered in the slightest. This was so entertaining that I just kind of brushed it off and patted myself on the back and kept reading. So bizarre but I think it just speaks to what a fantastic storyteller Spindler is. 

This was a tense, addictive and suspenseful read that kept my attention, I was pretty glued to my Kindle throughout.  Miranda had an interesting and heartbreaking backstory and I was rooting for her the whole time. She was a well drawn character and the secondary characters were also multidimensional, I especially liked her partner Jake. I didn’t totally predict the ending and I was satisfied by how things came together, again Spindler has a new fan in me and I’ll be adding some of her earlier work to my TBT list! 

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Review: The Goddesses by Swan Huntley


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Release date: July 25, 2017

Publisher: Doubleday Books 

Genre: Suspense/Thriller

Blurb:

The Descendants meets Single White Female in this captivating novel about a woman who moves her family to Hawaii, only to find herself wrapped up in a dangerous friendship, from the celebrated author of We Could Be Beautiful.


When Nancy and her family arrive in Kona, Hawaii, they are desperate for a fresh start. Nancy’s husband has cheated on her; they sleep in separate bedrooms and their twin sons have been acting out, setting off illegal fireworks. But Hawaii is paradise: they plant an orange tree in the yard; they share a bed once again and Nancy resolves to make a happy life for herself. She starts taking a yoga class and there she meets Ana, the charismatic teacher. Ana has short, black hair, a warm smile, and a hard-won wisdom that resonates deeply within Nancy. They are soon spending all their time together, sharing dinners, relaxing in Ana’s hot tub, driving around Kona in the cute little car Ana helps Nancy buy. As Nancy grows closer and closer to Ana skipping family dinners and leaving the twins to their own devices she feels a happiness and understanding unlike anything she’s ever experienced, and she knows that she will do anything Ana asks of her. 


A mesmerizing story of friendship and manipulation set against the idyllic tropical world of the Big Island, The Goddesses is a stunning psychological novel by one of our most exciting young writers. 

Review: 

I’m pretty conflicted trying to decide exactly how I feel about this one, there were many things that I really liked and then there were also many things that bothered me. Middle of the road reviews are my least favorite kind, I have the hardest time writing them, but I think I’ll stick to the format that’s worked best for me in the past. I’ll share what I liked, then what didn’t work for me with the hope that I’ll give you guys enough information to decide for yourselves if you want to try this one or not. 

The premise of this is great, I loved the mention of Single White Female and there is definitely a SWF vibe here. Huntley is a really strong writer and I loved her prose, there was something really delicate and pretty about it that was uniquely her own. It’s set in Kona and she also did a fantastic job of bringing the setting to life, it felt like a secondary character and the imagery was great. There are several scenes where Nancy and Ana are in Ana’s jacuzzi that overlooks the ocean and I could imagine these scenes easily. 

The basic bones of the plot were solid and I was really curious to see where things were headed but unfortunately in the end, everything fell flat for me. I feel like it could’ve been executed better, again everything was set up for something SO great but then I was really underwhelmed by the conclusion. I knew Nancy was on a downward spiral the whole book, that’s part of what made this a compulsive read, but then it sort of just…ends with no resolution and it was anticlimactic at best. 

Classifying this as a suspense/thriller is a mistake, I think readers expecting a story filled with tension and twists will be disappointed, any twists were predictable, especially if you’re a reader of the genre. If you are looking for a book that focuses more on characterization and female relationships with a side of intrigue, this could work for you. Or, if you don’t read many thrillers but want to dip your toe into the water, this would be a good place to start. Bottom line? A well written book with strong writing and interesting characters but was lacking in terms of the overall plot and sense of closure. 

Overall rating: 3/5

Thanks to Booksparks for my review copy. 

Review: Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent @lizzienugent


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Release date: August 22, 2017

Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press

Genre: Psychological Thriller 

Blurb: 

“I expected more of a reaction the first time I hit her.”


So begins Liz Nugent’s astonishing debut novel—a chilling, elegantly crafted, and psychologically astute exploration of the nature of evil.


Oliver Ryan, handsome, charismatic, and successful, has long been married to his devoted wife, Alice. Together they write and illustrate award-winning children’s books; their life together one of enviable privilege and ease—until, one evening after a delightful dinner, Oliver delivers a blow to Alice that renders her unconscious, and subsequently beats her into a coma.


In the aftermath of such an unthinkable event, as Alice hovers between life and death, the couple’s friends, neighbors, and acquaintances try to understand what could have driven Oliver to commit such a horrific act. As his story unfolds, layers are peeled away to reveal a life of shame, envy, deception, and masterful manipulation. 

Review: 

In terms of opening lines, Unraveling Oliver has one of the best I’ve ever read. “I expected more of a reaction the first time I hit her.” Its chilling and really sets the tone for the book, it sure grabbed my attention and held onto it. This is definitely a one sitting type of read, not only because it’s under 300 pages, but because it’s compelling and even if it had been much longer I still think I would’ve been just as hooked. 

What makes this such a standout, for me at least, is the narrative style combined with excellent characterization. This is told from multiple perspectives and each chapter switches POV. While Oliver himself does narrate, the rest of the cast really made this a memorable read for me. They’re a mix of friends, family and acquaintances of Oliver’s, people whose lives has intersected with his in some way. Nugent switches narratives seamlessly which can be very difficult to pull off as it can sometimes feel a little jarring and abrupt. Each character has a very distinct voice and the entire thing reads like they’re giving an interview giving the whole book an intimate feel. 

I don’t want to discuss any plot points because I feel it’s best to go into this as blindly as possible, but I will say that it’s heavily character driven with a focus on human psyche and behavior, but not in a clinical manner. It’s more of a nature versus nurture type of thing, a deep character study of one complex man that’s very well written and super smart. 

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Review: Blind Side by Jennie Ensor @jennie_ensor


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Release date: July 22, 2016

Publisher: Unbound

Genre: Thriller 

Blurb:

Can you ever truly know someone? And what if you suspect the unthinkable? 


London, five months before 7/7. Georgie, a young woman wary of relationships after previous heartbreak, gives in and agrees to sleep with close friend Julian. She’s shocked when Julian reveals he’s loved her for a long time. 


But Georgie can’t resist her attraction to Nikolai, a Russian former soldier she meets in a pub. While Julian struggles to deal with her rejection, Georgie realises how deeply war-time incidents in Chechnya have affected Nikolai. She begins to suspect that the Russian is hiding something terrible from her. 


Then London is attacked… 


Blind Side explores love and friendship, guilt and betrayal, secrets and obsession. An explosive, debate-provoking thriller that confronts urgent issues of our times and contemplates some of our deepest fears. 

Review: 

This book ended up being a very different read than what I was expecting it to be, but I don’t mean that in a bad way. It was deeper and more profound than your average psychological thriller and if pushed I would say it was more of romantic suspense with political tones than a straightforward psychological thriller. 

Georgie, Nikolai and Julian are the three main characters and all of them are well drawn and complex. They were very realistic and their fears and motivations were also easy to identify with. This is set in London in 2005 right before and during the 7/7 bombings and Ensor did a fantastic job of depicting the sense of fear and paranoia that I can only imagine was the general feeling during that time. 

There are some heavy themes explored here, but not the same type of themes that you usually find in a psychological thriller. Generally they are dark maybe even graphic in terms of violence but this time the themes are dark in a different way. Ensor explorers racism, terrorism, immigration and obsession all in a smart and profound way. There is the same sense of uneasiness and not knowing exactly who to trust, but Blind Side is a wholly unique read, one I think that leaves an impact on the reader in the end.

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the author for my review copy. 

Review: The Silent Girls by Eric Rickstad @ericrickstad


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Release date: January 27, 2015

Publisher: Witness Impulse 

Genre: Mystery/Thriller 

Blurb:

With the dead of a bitter Vermont winter closing in, evil is alive and well . . .


Frank Rath thought he was done with murder when he turned in his detective’s badge to become a private investigator and raise a daughter alone. Then the police in his remote rural community of Canaan find an ’89 Monte Carlo abandoned by the side of the road, and the beautiful teenage girl who owned the car seems to have disappeared without a trace.


Soon Rath’s investigation brings him face-to-face with the darkest abominations of the human soul.


With the consequences of his violent and painful past plaguing him, and young women with secrets vanishing one by one, he discovers once again that even in the smallest towns on the map, evil lurks everywhere–and no one is safe.


Morally complex, seething with wickedness and mystery, and rich in gritty atmosphere and electrifying plot turns, The Silent Girls marks the return of critically acclaimed author Eric Rickstad. Readers of Ian Rankin, Jo Nesbo, and Greg Iles will love this book and find themselves breathless at the incendiary, ambitious, and unforgettable story.

Review: 

The Silent Girls opens with a shocking and creepy prologue that made me eager to learn more. It was so crazy, intense and scary that I read it out loud to my husband so he could be creeped out as well, and he is NOT a reader whatsoever and even he was captivated. It’s Halloween in 1985 and a woman opens her door to a trick or treater expecting to have an ordinary interaction and it’s anything but. I’ll just say there is bloodshed and the hair on the back of my neck was standing up, a truly chilling opening to a really gripping book. 

It flips to 2011 and you’re introduced to Frank Rath a former police officer turned private investigator living in Vermont. I’m a big fan of a PI as a lead rather than a cop as I love how they can skirt the boundaries of the law and Rath definitely toes the line. He was a really strong protagonist and was crafted extremely well, I totally felt like I had a solid sense of who he is and what motivates him by the end. The secondary characters were also well drawn, they were mostly detectives who were working alongside Rath and you can definitely tell that Rickstad is laying the groundwork for a series. 

The writing style was smart and very distinct, I think I could pick up another one of the authors books with no name on the cover and still know that it was his work. It’s dark and gritty at times, a great companion to the stark setting in the lead up to a brutal Vermont winter. The plot was well constructed and kept me guessing and the subplot surrounding Rath’s personal life really piqued my interest. And that ending, talk about an explosive cliffhanger, I am SO glad that I’ll be reading the second book in this series really soon! 

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Thanks to the author for my review copy. 

Review: The Room by the Lake by Emma Dibdin @Hoz_Books 


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Release date: August 10, 2017

Publisher: Head of Zeus

Genre: Thriller

Blurb:

When Caitlin moved from London to New York, she thought she had left her problems behind: her alcoholic father, her dead mother, the pressure to succeed. But now, down to her last dollar in a foreign city, she is desperately lonely.


Then she meets Jake. Handsome, smart, slightly damaged Jake. He lives off-grid, in a lakeside commune whose members practise regular exercise and frequent group therapy. Before long, Caitlin has settled into her idyllic new home.


It looks like she has found the fresh start she longed for. But, as the commune tightens its grip on her freedom and her sanity, Caitlin realizes too late that she might become lost forever… 

Review: 

I’ve had a long fascination with cults, it’s always so interesting to see why an average person would ever join one. Was it just because they were at a vulnerable time in their life? Were they targeted and stalked like a hunter circling their prey? And how were they roped in to a place where they have to cut off contact with the outside world? 

Caitlin was definitely in a tough time in her life and I couldn’t help but feel sympathy for her. She was fragile and very easily manipulated and cult leaders are generally very adept at spotting this and using it to their advantage. Don is the leader of the group Caitlin joins and she is instantly mesmerized and intrigued by him, he has a charisma that speaks to her. The cast of characters here were well drawn and complex with histories and backgrounds that made it easy to see why they were drawn to “The Group”.

This was a slow burn with a lot of psychological insight as group members all participate in both individual and group therapy sessions. The bulk of this novel focuses on Caitlin and her sessions and as human psych interests me, I liked it. Things do get intense the further you read, there is a sense of discomfort and uneasiness because you know sinister things are lurking just beneath the surface. If you like books that explore cults and the behavior of their members, this is a solid read.

Overall rating: 4/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

#ThrowbackThursday You by Caroline Kepnes 


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Release date: June 16, 2015

Publisher: Atria/Emily Bestler

Genre: Thriller

Blurb:

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.


There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.


As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.

Review:

I’m joining in again with Throwback Thursday which was created by my good friend Renee at It’s Book Talk. She started this weekly feature as a way to highlight old favorites and read books that have already been published. I have so many older books on my TBR that get ignored in favor of review copies and I figure participating in Throwback Thursday will help me to read at a least one older title a week! This week I chose You as it was highly recommended by many people and it won the poll I posted on Twitter haha. 

I have a confession to make. Sometimes when a book is super over hyped I refuse to read it just to be stubborn. Why? I don’t even know really, sometimes I think it’s because if I wind up hating it I’ll just be irritated that I gave in. Or maybe it’s because I like knowing I have a highly recommended book in my TBR to look forward to. So that’s why I’ve avoided You for the past two years but I finally felt like it was time for me to see what all of the fuss was about and I’m really glad I quit being so damn stubborn and gave in.

Joe has one of the most oddly unique and powerfully strong voices I’ve ever read. It’s told in the second person as he is speaking directly to the object of his obsession, Beck which gave this such an intimate feeling. He rants, raves and rambles incessantly but it really works well here. It also gives you an extremely in depth look into the mind of a sick and deranged individual, so why in the hell did I like Joe so much?! I really did, despite his many flaws I enjoyed him and was kind of charmed by him even though it creeps me out just typing that. He captivated me and I couldn’t wait to see what he would do or think or say next. 

This is a super dark tale of obsession and manipulation that had me feeling uneasy and nervous the entire time. The creepiness level is at an all time high, some of the lengths Joe will go to are downright disturbing. It is sexually explicit with strong language, just a heads up for people that may not like that. But it’s also insanely well written and has an almost hypnotizing style, it’s honestly not like anything I’ve ever read before. I’ll be picking up the sequel, Hidden Bodies very soon!

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Review: The Address by Fiona Davis @FionaJDavis @DuttonBooks


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Release date: August 1, 2017

Publisher: Dutton Books

Genre: Historical Fiction

Blurb:

Fiona Davis, author of The Dollhouse, returns with a compelling novel about the thin lines between love and loss, success and ruin, passion and madness, all hidden behind the walls of The Dakota, New York City’s most famous residence. 


After a failed apprenticeship, working her way up to head housekeeper of a posh London hotel is more than Sara Smythe ever thought she’d make of herself. But when a chance encounter with Theodore Camden, one of the architects of the grand New York apartment house The Dakota, leads to a job offer, her world is suddenly awash in possibility–no mean feat for a servant in 1884. The opportunity to move to America, where a person can rise above one’s station. The opportunity to be the female manager of The Dakota, which promises to be the greatest apartment house in the world. And the opportunity to see more of Theo, who understands Sara like no one else . . . and is living in The Dakota with his wife and three young children. 


In 1985, Bailey Camden is desperate for new opportunities. Fresh out of rehab, the former party girl and interior designer is homeless, jobless, and penniless. Two generations ago, Bailey’s grandfather was the ward of famed architect Theodore Camden. But the absence of a genetic connection means Bailey won’t see a dime of the Camden family’s substantial estate. Instead, her -cousin- Melinda–Camden’s biological great-granddaughter–will inherit almost everything. So when Melinda offers to let Bailey oversee the renovation of her lavish Dakota apartment, Bailey jumps at the chance, despite her dislike of Melinda’s vision. The renovation will take away all the character and history of the apartment Theodore Camden himself lived in . . . and died in, after suffering multiple stab wounds by a madwoman named Sara Smythe, a former Dakota employee who had previously spent seven months in an insane asylum on Blackwell’s Island. 


One hundred years apart, Sara and Bailey are both tempted by and struggle against the golden excess of their respective ages–for Sara, the opulence of a world ruled by the Astors and Vanderbilts; for Bailey, the free-flowing drinks and cocaine in the nightclubs of New York City–and take refuge and solace in the Upper West Side’s gilded fortress. But a building with a history as rich–and often tragic–as The Dakota’s can’t hold its secrets forever, and what Bailey discovers in its basement could turn everything she thought she knew about Theodore Camden–and the woman who killed him–on its head. 


With rich historical detail, nuanced characters, and gorgeous prose, Fiona Davis once again delivers a compulsively readable novel that peels back the layers of not only a famed institution, but the lives –and lies–of the beating hearts within. 

Review: 

Last summer I had the pleasure of reading Davis’ debut, The Dollhouse and I was so impressed. I was never a huge fan of historical fiction before I read her books and I have her to thank for opening my eyes to yet another amazing genre. I’ve read so much more HF this past year and I don’t know if I would’ve without reading The Dollhouse, so thanks Fiona Davis for expanding my world!

Having been such a fan of her debut I had that nervous feeling I always feel when I’m about to read an authors sophmore book. Well, I shouldn’t have worried at all, I ended up liking this one even more than her first, it was mesmerizing, full of detailed historical descriptions, an amazing setting and two characters that I fully connected with.

This is told using dual narratives set one hundred years apart. Sara is a thirty year old woman who moves from England to New York for a job opportunity in 1884 and Bailey is also thirty and living in NYC in 1985. Both of the timelines were equally fascinating for me, they were both mainly set in the famed Dakota Apartments and Davis truly brought this wonderful setting to life. Most of the book was historically accurate and the liberties she took fictionally were perfectly executed. I really felt like I was beside both women in the Dakota, it was such an immersive, engrossing setting.

Sara and Bailey had many similarities despite being from two completely different worlds. They both have struggles and difficulties to overcome and I was rooting for them the whole way. I found myself sympathizing easily with both of them and couldn’t wait to find out what would wind up happening with their lives.

This is one of those books that will truly sweep you away to another time, there is such a strong sense of place that really worked well for me. While this isn’t a traditional mystery there were some surprises along the way that add another layer to the wonderful plot. If you loved The Dollhouse you’ll like this one as well, and if you haven’t read it but enjoy HF what are you waiting for?!

Overall rating: 5/5

Review: Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber @katelizabee


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Release date: August 1, 2017

Publisher: Gallery Books

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Blurb:

Serial meets Ruth Ware’s In A Dark, Dark Wood in this inventive and twisty psychological thriller about a mega-hit podcast that reopens a murder case—and threatens to unravel the carefully constructed life of the victim’s daughter.


The only thing more dangerous than a lie…is the truth.


Josie Buhrman has spent the last ten years trying to escape her family’s reputation and with good reason. After her father’s murder thirteen years prior, her mother ran away to join a cult and her twin sister Lanie, once Josie’s closest friend and confidant, betrayed her in an unimaginable way. Now, Josie has finally put down roots in New York, settling into domestic life with her partner Caleb, and that’s where she intends to stay. The only problem is that she has lied to Caleb about every detail of her past—starting with her last name.


When investigative reporter Poppy Parnell sets off a media firestorm with a mega-hit podcast that reopens the long-closed case of Josie’s father’s murder, Josie’s world begins to unravel. Meanwhile, the unexpected death of Josie’s long-absent mother forces her to return to her Midwestern hometown where she must confront the demons from her past—and the lies on which she has staked her future. 

Review: 

Well guys, it’s time for me to officially topple your summer reading list. Sorry, but I’m not sorry! (Not even a little bit, haha) Are You Sleeping is a perfect addition to your TBR, it’s compulsive, engrossing and highly addictive, I loved it!

Two things that always catch my eye in a thriller is sister or twin relationships and a cold case and this gem had both. Josie and Lanie have an extremely complex relationship and haven’t seen or talked to each other in ten years. Both were the kind of character that can frustrate the hell out of you on one page and then the next they’re tugging on your heartstrings. That sense of unease and uncertainty really added to this tale of lies and betrayals. The girls moved in with their Aunt A and cousin Ellen after their father was killed and I really liked Ellen. She’s kind of bossy and overbearing, but she has a huge heart and was super endearing. 

My favorite thing about this book was how engaging it was, there is something about Barber’s writing style that just hooked me. There is a great social media addition in the form of podcast excerpts, Reddit threads and updates from Twitter and Facebook feeds that added something really unique and current. If you’ve read Six Stories there is a similarity but not completely the same, this one easily stands on its own feet.

This was one of those reads where I kept thinking I had things all figured out and then Barber would throw in a new twist to shake things up. Ultimately, I did have some aspects worked out but it absolutely did not take away from my enjoyment of this highly entertaining read. This would be perfect for readers who don’t like graphic violence, it’s on the lighter side and has very few truly dark moments, but it’s still very compelling. Pack this one in your bag next time you’re going on vacation, I think it would be ideal! 

Overall rating: 4/5 

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy. 

Review: Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker 

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Release date: August 8, 2017

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Blurb:

From the bestselling author of All Is Not Forgotten comes a thriller about two missing sisters, a twisted family, and what happens when one girl comes back…


One night three years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn’t add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister’s return might just be the beginning of the crime. 

Review: 

This is told using dual narratives, it alternates between Cass who disappeared three years ago and shows up suddenly at home and also from Abby, the psychiatrist that has been working the case since Cass and her sister Emma vanished. I especially enjoyed the chapters from Abby’s point of view as a psychological insight fascinates me and there is much to explore in Cass and her complicated family. It chronicles the days immediately following Cass return as Abby and the FBI try to uncover where exactly Cass has been and where Emma is now. There are SO many questions and layers to this insane mystery, it’s a constant guessing game and then second guessing that had me on the edge of my seat.

While I liked the pacing and it definitely held my attention, the process of learning the details of Cass three year disappearance was sometimes painstakingly slow. Oddly enough, I was still totally captivated by this dark tale of a twisted family and their bizarre dynamics. It really was an intoxicating read for me, but if you don’t like your psychological thrillers with a heavy dose of psychology, this could be a frustrating read. 

This is full of unlikable characters and unreliability, but each character was extremely well drawn. The writing was strong and smart and the plot was very well thought out and executed. While there were some twists early on, towards the end there were an onslaught of turns that left me reeling, I especially liked the ending. If you like thrillers with an insight into the human psyche, check this one out. 

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.