Book lover. Stephen King Fanatic. Will try anything once. General Lover of Fiction. Reviewer Everywhere. All views my own. Mostly.
Publication Date: Available Now on Kindle and 23rd April 2015 Paperback from Headline.
Source: Author review copy
My name is Emma Cartwright. Three years ago I was Susan Webster, and I murdered my twelve-week-old son Dylan. I was sent to Oakdale Psychiatric Institute for my crime, and four weeks ago I was released early on parole with a new identity, address and a chance to rebuild my tattered life. This morning, I received an envelope addressed to Susan Webster. Inside it was a photograph of a toddler called Dylan. Now I am questioning everything I believe because if I have no memory of the event, how can I truly believe he's dead?
Really enjoyed this one - an absolute and complete page turner that had me completely enthralled. Took me ages to see where it was going as well, which is always a huge plus point when it comes to mystery and thriller novels, where surprises are few and far between no matter how good they are. And this one was good!
So we have Emma then. She is in her second life if you like, her first being that of Susan Webster, child murderer. She does not remember what happened but has grown to accept that she did, indeed, smother her child. Then a picture arrives and everything changes...
There was a huge mix of things to love about this tale - firstly Susan (Or Emma) herself who is haunted by a past she cannot quite recall and scared of a future that she cannot see. Her closest friend is one she met while in the Institute, the dynamic of this duo is one of the particular strengths of the novel - Cassie is an endlessly fascinating character, one who I warmed to, abrasive as she was, and the deep and lasting yet often confrontational relationship they have is particularly well drawn.
Then we have the mystery element - is it possible at all that Susan has been lied to and Dylan is still alive? As she begins to hope, you are completely drawn into events as they unfold - determined to uncover the truth, yet questioning herself at every turn, it is often sad yet absolutely compelling. There are flashback portions of the book that tell a story from a different viewpoint and as the two threads come together you will not be able to stop reading until you find out what happens.
Other people are thrown into the mix as Susan develops new relationships and reconsiders old ones...it is at times a bit of an emotional rollercoaster, at times a bit of a thrill ride and always completely addictive and beautifully written.
Definitely highly recommended for fans of psychological thrillers.
Happy Reading Folks!