• Edition: Kindle 320 pages22590078
  • asin: B00M88VQJG
  • format: Kindle Edition
  • Published Orion
  • December 23rd 2014

Available to buy from:

Amazon UK, Amazon US and other online stores

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☆☆☆☆

Synopsis

Dana Nolan was a promising young TV reporter until a notorious serial killer tried to add her to his list of victims.  Nearly a year has passed since surviving her ordeal, but the physical, emotional, and psychological scars run deep.  Struggling with the torment of post-traumatic stress syndrome, plagued by flashbacks and nightmares as dark as the heart of a killer, Dana returns to her hometown in an attempt to begin to put her life back together.  But home doesn’t provide the comfort she expects.
 
Dana’s harrowing story and her return to small town life have rekindled police and media interest in the unsolved case of her childhood best friend, Casey Grant, who disappeared without a trace the summer after their graduation from high school.  Terrified of truths long-buried, Dana reluctantly begins to look back at her past.  Viewed through the dark filter of PTSD, old friends and loved ones become suspects and enemies.  Questioning everything she knows, refusing to be defined by the traumas of her past and struggling against excruciating odds, Dana seeks out a truth that may prove too terrible to be believed…

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What I liked about this book….

Wow, thrilling right from the start!  As usual Tami Hoag writes a great story and you will not be disappointed. It does have a very different accent on it though which adds to the thrills.

Taken and tortured by a serial killer, Dana, his only surviver kills her abductor. Back from the brink of death and hell, and struggling to recover with a brain that is damaged, she is traumatised beyond belief and her recovery gets focussed on discovering what happened to her best friend who disappeared several years earlier.

The brain damage forces her to look at things more detailed to make sense of them and with the help of a retired detective; a sinister character in her eyes, in a twist he helps her towards self healing.

I like how not everything is neatly explained away, there are fragments of discrepancies amongst the information that she can’t quite remember, and the inconsistencies in several characters behaviour leave you just wondering if there is anything behind it…?

The good guys might not be, and the bad guys may still be. Cops, parents, friends, boyfriends protect one another don’t they? So who is protecting who in this town and why? This book is different.

The current rape and murder of young women appears to be just unconnected details, until it becomes more likely that her own ordeal and these women maybe somehow tenuously linked.

Cleverly woven flaws in each character into the possibility of something darker, and with many red herrings coming thick and furious, I thought I had worked out who was doing what, then no, then thought it was someone else, then wrong again!

Daily battle of remembering how to get to the kitchen, or bedroom, combined with remembering to eat, how to wash and clean her teeth in the morning prompts her to photograph and tag everything to aid her memory, and in doing so enables her to methodically make new inroads into her friends disappearance. (Thanks for that wonderful tip Tami, it will help me with my own short term memory difficulties!)

There are some great descriptions that give a glimpse into Dana’s mind, one favourite of mine is:

‘The question swirled around like angry bees inside her sleep deprived, fuzzy mind.’

What a great thriller and I was educated at the same time. Hoag is right, there is this rosy (TV) view of someone suffering brain injury, waking up and getting back to normal reasonably quickly. Dana wakes with lasting memory loss, and cognitive difficulties which makes for an informative and much more interesting story.

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Many thanks to the publisher via NetGalley for a copy of this book.

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