I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Everything She Forgot by Lisa Ballantyne
Published by HarperCollins on October 6, 2015
Genres: Fiction, Thrillers, Suspense, Contemporary Women, General
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Some things aren't meant to be remembered . . .
They're calling it the worst pileup in London history. Margaret Holloway is driving home, but her mind is elsewhere—on a troubled student, her daughter's acting class, the next day's meeting—when she's rear-ended and trapped in the wreckage. Just as she begins to panic, a disfigured stranger pulls her from the car seconds before it's engulfed in flames. Then he simply disappears.
Though she escapes with minor injuries, Margaret feels that something's wrong. She's having trouble concentrating. Her emotions are running wild. More than that, flashbacks to the crash are also dredging up lost associations from her childhood, fragments of events that had been wiped from her memory. Whatever happened, she didn't merely forget—she chose to forget. And somehow, Margaret knows deep down that it has something to do with the man who saved her life.
As Margaret uncovers a mystery with chilling implications for her family and her very identity, Everything She Forgot winds through a riveting dual narrative and asks the question: How far would you go to hide the truth—from yourself?
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♦ Everything She Forgot is one of those novels that sucks you right in and doesn’t let go until you have read the last word. Each chapter winds through the past and present with a a host of different characters narrating. This mash-up of time and tone helps to increase the tension, as you are never sure where that particular piece of the story will end and how long it will take to wrap back around to it. I also enjoyed that the character cast as the villain was someone I ended up rooting for and a character playing the savior was thoroughly unlikable to me. This juxtaposition helped increase the tension and ensured that the twists kept coming. I had originally requested this book based on its comparisons with Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train as I enjoyed both of them. While Everything She Forgot is loosely in that genre I do not consider it quite in the same vein. In the first two there was no real heart to the main characters. The action drove the plot and, while mesmerizing, there was no deep emotional connection. In Everything She Forgot the addition of the family bonds and loyalty take it out of straight suspense in a good way; I enjoy when I feel a connection with a character and here I had that in spades. So if you are looking for pure dark and twisty, this is not your read; but if you want your suspense with a some heart I highly recommend Everything She Forgot.
◊ Favorite lines – from Chapter 25 “It was the time that was killing her, slowly. Every second without Moll was agony. It was like being burned from the feet up, as Joan of Arc had been.”
¤ Biggest cliche – Men being cruel and saying they are doing it because they are inherently smarter than women.
Δ Do you like your suspense reads to have emotion or just thrills?