Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: April 10, 2018
Date Read: April
Length: 400 pages
Nobody cuts deeper than family...
Noah Alderman, a doctor and a widower, has remarried a wonderful woman, Maggie, and for the first time in a long time he and his son are happy. But their lives are turned upside down when Maggie’s daughter Anna moves in with them. Anna is a gorgeous seventeen-year-old who balks at living under their rules though Maggie, ecstatic to have her daughter back, ignores the red flags that hint at the trouble that is brewing. Events take a deadly turn when Anna is murdered and Noah is accused of the crime. Maggie must face not only the devastation of losing her only daughter, but the realization that her daughter's murder was at the hands of a husband she loves. New information sends Maggie searching for the truth, leading her to discover something darker than she could have ever imagined.
I have very mixed feelings about this book. I have been a fan of Lisa Scottoline for a long time and have almost always really enjoyed her books so I went into this book expecting to love it. I didn't love it but I didn't hate it either. It was really just kind of okay for me. I had a really hard time getting into this book and it actually took me an entire week to finish it which is a very long time for me to be reading a single book. Once I really got into the book a bit, I did find the story a bit more entertaining and was very curious how things would work out.
I feel like Scottoline took a bit of a risk with how this story is laid out and I am not sure that it paid off at least for me. The book is told through 2 points of view and 2 different time lines. Noah's point of view starts at the end his trial for the murder of Anna and works its way backwards through time. Maggie's point of view begins with Anna's first contact with her since she was a baby and progresses towards the events leading to the trial. These two points of view move in opposite directions until they eventually come together. I feel that one of the reasons that I had such a hard time getting into the book was that I already knew that Anna was going to be killed and Noah was going to stand trial for the murder. I didn't know how those things would happen but some of the desire to find out what would happen next was lost simply because of how the story was laid out.
Eventually the two points of view meet up and start to follow the same basic timeline which really worked better for me. Some of that is achieved through Noah's memories while he sits in the courtroom during his trial. I think that some of the best parts of the book were the times that we would see an event from both Noah and Maggie's point of view.
I love a good plot twist. But I like for plot twists to be believable. I want them to be at least somewhat realistic. This book started taking twists and turns all over the place and most of them seemed way over the top. Instead of surprise over the turn in the story, I felt shocked that the story had become so implausible. The last part of the book spun in a whole new direction that seemed more odd than anything.
Despite my issues, I do enjoy Scottoline's writing and found this book to be very readable and I did like the book. I think that a lot of readers will enjoy this one more than I did so I would encourage anyone drawn to the description to give the book a try. I do plan to read more from Lisa Scottoline in the future.
I received a digital review copy of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley.
About the Author
LISA SCOTTOLINE is a New York Times bestselling and Edgar Award-winning author of twenty-three novels. She has served as the president of Mystery Writers of America. She has 30 million copies of her books in print in the U.S., and she has been published in thirty-five countries. She writes a column with her daughter, Francesca Serritella, for The Philadelphia Inquirer, and those stories have been adapted into a series of memoirs. She lives in the Philadelphia area with an array of disobedient pets.
© April Narby