A fun, brain-teasing mystery.
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
No. of pages: 306
Washed up on the beach, she can’t remember who she is. She can’t even remember her name. Turns out, she has an idyllic life – friends and family eager to fill in the blanks.
But why are they lying to her? What don’t they want her to remember?
When you don’t even know who you are, how do you know who to trust?
What a ride! I was dubious about this book after the first few chapters: amnesia as a plot device, *yawn* everyone lying to the protagonist, it was all feeling a little 80’s-television-plot from ‘Moonlighting.’ Especially when in those beginning chapters our protagonist Mia didn’t really want to find out about her lost memories – she said she did – but I would have ransacked my house, called every number in my address book and had the police giving me as much information as I could. Mia just seemed so blasé about it all. A little clue here, a little clue there, a mysterious memory-dream, blah, blah, blah.
But then the plot started to kick in and things got really interesting. I was quick to forget about my sarcastic views and started to enjoy working out the plot.
I liked Mia’s innocent views of her situation, but not so much her behaviour. She never questioned herself – why did she react in certain ways? Why did she surround herself with the type of people she has? Needless to say, I didn’t peg her for much of a thinker. Nice. Pleasant. But not too analytical when it came to trying to piece together her life. And I also found her a little weak at times. But other times I liked her vulnerability and strength to power through difficult situations. She is complex and had a riveting story, and even though my opinion of her is fractured, she is compelling.
One of my biggest pet peeves in real life is people using ‘babe’ or ‘baby’ as a term of endearment. So even before we get to know Piers, Mia’s boyfriend at the start of the novel, I instantly disliked him. Anything he did after that was inconsequential.
The pacing is good, but I would have liked stronger clues discovered earlier, either as red herrings or dark secrets, something to give that first few chapters a bit more oompf.
Boland has a pretty deft writing style, she’d brief and to the point, but spends the time to set the scene – especially with the many outdoor settings. I could practically smell the water and feel the warm sun on my face.
For some reason, I got really attached to DS Wright. Something about her manner and the way Boland wrote her had me screaming for more – I would have loved more scenes with her presence, maybe more active in the narrative in helping Mia piece together her life. There was even a moment I hoped for some sort of dalliance between her and Mia. *gasp*
I must say, I had guessed the plot well before the ending of the novel. Only because the author didn’t do a good enough job at placing a little suspicion on everyone. Some people were too squeaky clean and that was a bit like waving a giant red flag. The other thing was viewing all the actions objectively… But still there was a little curve ball or two thrown in that I did not see coming. So, bravo Shalini Boland, you got me!
A great read. I completed it in a day and recommend to anyone who likes a good psychological thriller. It’s not a genre I have read much of before, and this was a great reintroduction.
Overall feeling: And then? No and then! And then, and then and then… I wanted more.
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