Okay, this isn't a major spoiler but I do want to explain why I rated the book just 2 stars.. I rate books on themselves (writing style, editing etc) and on what they do for me (entertain me, uplift me etc) The book is well written and entertaining but it did not leave me in a good place when I finished it. I like books where good triumphs. This isn't one.
I somehow had a feeling that this book by author Shalini Boland was going to be a fabulous read. I hadn't liked her previous 2 books. And my intuition proved correct. This was one heck of a ride!!
The story started with an absolute heart stopping bang - little Katie was missing with mother Gemma and elder daughter Eva frantically searching for her. I thought that would be the beginning of a missing child arc. But nooooo... That was a feint by Ms. Boland. And story went on to become so much deeper and better.
Gemma and Robert were a busy working couple, who needed a tutor for Eva, and mother in law Diane found nanny Sadie for them. And the story started rolling...
I thought I knew where the plot was going but somewhere in my mind, I had a feeling that the author wouldn't be giving us a straightforward oft-repeated trope. And boy, was I right!! The plot took a deep swerve and landed where I least expected.
It was a great finish but I knew this time the epilogue would pack a wallop. And so it did... Well played, Ms. Bolland. Game, set, and match all to you!!
My niggles were some unanswered questions, and I kind of suspected the last truth. But the story kept me gripped from start to finish. I hardly took time to breathe. The book did cause a fervored brow and a spike in my heart rate. Overall a great thriller!!
Gemma Ballantine is a working mum with two adorable daughters, six and ten. She has a loving and devoted husband, Robert, but her work life is driving her bonkers and her husband doesn’t make much. No. She is the main breadwinner of the family. Naturally, her family life takes a backseat. So when she is coaxed to hiring a nanny cum tutor she feels everything is going to be perfect. The blurb is what got my attention – her younger daughter Katie goes missing in the beginning of the book and is soon found but things take a U-turn therein. I was curious as to what could be worser than that?
Soon things begin to go awry, missing keys, missing memory, horrible experiences and all this culminates to hiring a nanny that turns out to be life altering. What started great begins to feel like a mistake and soon Gemma finds herself in a devastating situation, but is it all real? – for a lack of better word. For sometime I really wondered if Gemma is crazy but later on I seriously wanted to punch the person behind all this – which brings me to the best part. You would never guess who – not from miles away. Thats what I loved about this book.
The thrillers I had read this year, most of them were mildly predictable. Maybe cause I hadn’t expected the obvious here but it was a pleasant surprise. The twist makes it even more delicious. I seriously love a book that leaves me conflicted yet satisfied. Shalini Boland has delivered a master stroke and I definitely want to check her other books.
Thank you to net galley and Bookouture for my review copy.