The story starts with the father, Bill Price, entering the emergency room of the hospital, in search of his daughter, Summer who has been found brutally beaten, head to toe, to an inch of her life in the park, along with her best friend Haley, who is dead. Bill is in a state of shock, he had been searching for her, for 2 days and seeing his daughter in that state, nearly breaks him apart. But he stays strong for her, along with his sister Paige, tries to find out the truth.
Before he is able to stabilize with the reality of his situation, Summer having brain damage or requiring long term rehabilitation, he is hit by a shocking news which shakes the ground that he is standing on. And it doesn’t stop there, he is hit again with a gruesome reality, and that forces him to investigate the trauma caused to him and his family. All the lies, all the truths, all that he holds dear is laid to bare, till he can do nothing but fight back.
David Bell is a genius of a writer. When I opened the book, the first thing I noticed was there are 96 chapters, I had to become mentally ready for the long read, but lo and behold, the chapters just flew on. I finished this book in a few hours, could not put it down, I had to know all the secrets of the Price family and the hidden truths.
The author has put such twists in place, that when the first one occurred, I felt that I understood where the story was leading to, but when the second one occurred, I could not believe it. This was not where I was going with the story in my mind. David Bell just blew my brains away with the second one…. WOW…
Bill Price as the father is believable, losing his wife a year and half back, had devastated the family, and Summer and he, had barely managed to carry on. Summer as the insolent, moody teenager and Paige as the aunt play their parts well. Full credit to David Bell for that.
What makes this book memorable for me is the secrets and the twists. David Bell weaves the twists in the story at the perfect corner, that when they are revealed, I wanted to scream and shout with the father. I felt his pain, his shock. Everything that he thought to be true turned out to be a lie. He was betrayed by all. It felt like a heavy stormy wind blowing the breath out of his lungs and thereby my lungs and along with that, annihilating both of us. With one twist of fate, the father lost everything, and I gained an unputdowanable book.
There are, as usual a few niggles
I found the ending slightly weak, the reasons given were a bit feeble and I felt certain parts of the mystery were not explained fully. The stormy rollercoaster ride was not maintained till the end. It plateaus a bit till the ending.
But, all in all, I would recommend this book to everyone and I think i have found a new author and his books to be kept in my repertoire.
I received an ARC from NetGalley and publisher, Berkley and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.
My rating : 4 stars
About the Author
David Bell is a bestselling and award-winning author whose work has been translated into multiple foreign languages. He’s currently an associate professor of English at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where he directs the MFA program. He received an MA in creative writing from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and a PhD in American literature and creative writing from the University of Cincinnati. His previous novels are Since She Went Away, Somebody I Used to Know, The Forgotten Girl, Never Come Back, The Hiding Place, and Cemetery Girl.
Just a year and a half after the tragic death of his wife, Bill Price’s fifteen-year-old daughter, Summer, and her best friend, Haley, disappear. Days later, the girls are found in a city park. Haley is dead at the scene, while Summer is left beaten beyond recognition and clinging to life.
As Bill holds vigil over Summer’s bandaged body, the only sound the unconscious girl can make is one cryptic and chilling word: No. And the more time Bill spends with Summer, the more he wonders what happened to her.
When troubling new questions about Summer’s life surface, Bill is not prepared for the aftershocks. He’ll soon discover that both the living and the dead have secrets. And that searching for the truth will tear open old wounds that pierce straight to the heart of his family…
Publication date : 11th July 2017
Publisher : Berkeley Publishing
Language : English
Available on Amazon
A goosebumpy family thriller