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I am the first to admit that thrillers are not my thing, and not because I don’t like them. Actually, I used to read a LOT of them, to the point where I got way too good at guessing the ending. It didn’t take long for me to figure out the good guys, the nice guys, and the in between guys, and that just made thriller reading…boring.
BUT – I make exceptions for Riley Sager. I’ve read all but one of his books (haven’t read Home Before Dark yet) and have enjoyed them all, including this one.
Here’s 4 things I loved about this book:
- The character building we experienced with Charlie. I felt like I knew her, I wanted to be her friend, and like I needed to give her a big ole hug.
- The constant guessing. I had moments where I wasn’t sure if what I was reading was really happening in the story, or if it was a “movie in Charlie’s mind” (basically, hallucinations she has throughout the book). This state of confusion kept me engaged and also kept me from guessing what was happening next.
- I felt very tense while reading it (especially the second half), and if I don’t feel tense while reading a thriller, something is wrong. This one had me a little creeped out at times, questioning what every noise was in my house as I read it in bed at night.
- The imagery of the climax was very spooky and well drawn out – I could see the place in my mind, feel the flames from the fire, and felt frantic right along with Charlie.
One thing that I didn’t love about this book:
- I guessed the killer. While that alone won’t usually make me take off a star, I felt that the motives of this killer weren’t fleshed out enough and we didn’t get enough of their backstory.
Overall, a solid thriller and another win for Sager, 4 stars from me!
Death, Death of parent, Grief, Kidnapping, Murder, Panic attacks/disorders, Suicide attempt, Blood, Torture