Thursday, 27 April 2017

The Perfect Stranger

Author: Megan Miranda
Genre: Suspense
Type: Trade Paperback
Pages: 336
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Canada
First Published: April 11, 2017
First Line: "The at under the front porch was at it again."

Book Description from GoodReadsIn the masterful follow-up to the runaway hit All the Missing Girls, a journalist sets out to find a missing friend, a friend who may never have existed at all.

Confronted by a restraining order and the threat of a lawsuit, failed journalist Leah Stevens needs to get out of Boston when she runs into an old friend, Emmy Grey, who has just left a troubled relationship. Emmy proposes they move to rural Pennsylvania, where Leah can get a teaching position and both women can start again. But their new start is threatened when a woman with an eerie resemblance to Leah is assaulted by the lake, and Emmy disappears days later.

Determined to find Emmy, Leah cooperates with Kyle Donovan, a handsome young police officer on the case. As they investigate her friend’s life for clues, Leah begins to wonder: did she ever really know Emmy at all? With no friends, family, or a digital footprint, the police begin to suspect that there is no Emmy Grey. Soon Leah’s credibility is at stake, and she is forced to revisit her past: the article that ruined her career. To save herself, Leah must uncover the truth about Emmy Grey—and along the way, confront her old demons, find out who she can really trust, and clear her own name.

Everyone in this rural Pennsylvanian town has something to hide—including Leah herself. How do you uncover the truth when you are busy hiding your own?

My Rating: 3 stars

My Review: Unlike many other readers I have never read Megan Miranda's popular book All The Missing Girls but based on the buzz surrounding that book, I jumped at the chance to review her latest literary offering.

This story is set around Leah, a tainted journalist who moves to a small town with her old friend Emmy who has suddenly reappeared in her life. When Emmy goes missing and there's a brutal attack against a woman who looks suspiciously similar to Leah, Leah starts to investigate. 

This book has very bleak, dreary tone throughout which I wasn't crazy about.  Miranda uses the ever-popular unreliable main character which worked well. The Perfect Stranger has a lot of characters and subplots - almost too many.  There's a lot going on here but these subplots didn't always work well together.  

As far as characters go, I can't say I was a fan of Leah. She was frustrating and while I liked that I didn't know where I stood with her she also came off as overly naive for an experienced journalist. Who doesn't know details about a person they've lived with, especially when they feel such a strong connection to them?  As a journalist wouldn't that bother her that she was missing those pieces of information?  It just didn't ring true for me.

I struggled to rate this book because some aspects were done well and others were weak. The suspenseful build-up was strong but it also felt unnecessarily convoluted much of the time. The plot had great potential but the energy fizzled out at the end leaving readers without a major twist. Instead we're given a meek conclusion that didn't give readers enough explanation or confrontation that we were hoping to witness.

Disclaimer:  My sincere thanks to Simon and Schuster Canada for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.


Tamara @ Traveling With T said...

Oh man! Sorry that this one didn't work for you so much. I REALLY enjoyed it, but you know.. different strokes for different folks. I still suggest that you check out All The Missing Girls!

Laurie@The Baking Bookworm said...

I liked it but didn't love it. Loved how I wasn't sure about some things but the ending was too quick and abrupt. I'm reading The Woman in Cabin 10 right now and quite enjoying it. And like you said, 'different strokes for different folks'. :)

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