Okay every time I see the title to this book I get that creepy ass song stuck in my head. So now I’m sharing it with you because misery loves company.
This is yet another domestic thriller but it left me cold. I’m all for implausible endings and twists- you can’t read domestic thrillers and not be. Is the narrator reliable? Did this all actually happen in the past? Is someone cheating on/related to/secret love child of/someone else?! All of the above?!?! (The moral of most of these books is that therapy is wildly under-utilized….or to never trust your therapist if you have one because they are TOTALLY in on the plot).
In this book, a young woman shows up at a police station with a tale of torture and abuse, of being captive in her own home for years under the thumb of an abusive partner who she’s finally escaped. But when the police go to her home to investigate, there’s nothing there. No signs of abuse, nothing to match her accounts, and no partner. He’s vanished. The woman goes to a halfway DV shelter, and the rest of the book is intended to keep you guessing as to if she’s making it all up or if she’s in danger until the [gasp] shocking twist! Except the guesswork is not that hard and the twist is telegraphed a mile away.
I don’t actually need a book to totally surprise me to enjoy it. When you read enough of these domestic thrillers, you can usually spot the ending coming. I’m happy if the book has me guessing between one or two potential endings (i.e. hmmm the husband is gaslighting her and she’s an unreliable narrator OR her secret twin brother is totally alive and stalking her, it’s DEFINITELY one of those two). But there was no guesswork here. And the book wasn’t good enough to enjoy the slog to the inevitable end. This one is a skip.
(I also work in a field that involves quite a bit of working with survivors of domestic violence and have my own other critiques about those portrayals but that’s another more serious essay for another day).
….I started this review and got that damn song stuck in my head. I came back to it later…and the song is back. I changed my mind. The worst part about this book is that title and damn song. I’ll never escape it.