I loved Darby Kane’s debut novel, The Perfect Wife, so I spent months looking forward to this book. And it did not disappoint me.
One of my favorite character types in thrillers is the unreliable narrator. Elisa fit that role perfectly. There were so many shades of gray about her, making the reader question just how much of what is happening to her is real and how much of it may be little more than fragments of a somewhat damaged mind. She was, in my opinion, an incredibly sympathetic character. At some prior to the beginning of the book, she lived through an horrifyingly traumatic event, one that forever changed her. Now she’s left dealing with PTSD. And yes, that leads to an oft-overused trope… the rather weak, mentally unstable, pill-popping woman who is left open to gaslighting and condescension by the men, and often women, in her life. But that felt real, integral to the story.
The way the Elisa was treated was so well written that I often had an almost visceral reaction to it. There were times when I had to set down my book, walk away, and take some calming breaths. I felt her angst, her hurt, her confusion, her pain… all as if it were my own. My need for her to be believed, to be taken seriously, kept me turning the pages. The suspense was in play from the first page to the last, though so many twists and turns.
I loved this book and can’t want for the next!