Originally published: 2 May 2019
Author: Jack Jordan
Published by: Corvus
Length: 432 pages
Reading dates: 7-10 May 2019
Poor Rose suffers from dreadful insomnia which started after the birth of her twin girls, Violet and Lily 10 years previously. Despite being barely able to stay awake, she takes her girls in a football game and then on the way home looses control of the car when she drops to sleep for a second. The car plunges into a river and she only manages to get Lily out of the car – Violet drowns.
4 years on from the accident, and Rose is still suffering from insomnia and also agonising guilt. Her husband Christian can’t bare to look at her, blaming her for the loss of Violet and Lily can’t stand to be in the same room as her. One dark evening she collides with a man who quickly vanishes but Rose finds a diary at her feet.
When she opens it in the hope of being able to return it to its owner, she reads the words “My name is Finn Matthews. If you’re reading this then I’m dead.” Rose decides to dedicate her sleepless nights trying to discover what happened to Finn, especially as the police don’t seem to think their is anything to investigate, despite there being a spate of other disappearances.
Goodness, this is the fastest I’ve read a book for a while. I’ve been aware of Jack Jordan after winning his previous book Before Her Eyes in a giveaway and I know a lot of readers rate his books highly. I thought the insomnia descriptions were done really well and I can’t even begin to imagine what it must be like to live like that. And the scene where she crashed her car and lost Violet was just heart-breaking.
On the back of this tragedy, we have a great thriller in which Rose believes Finn to be dead, but on being dismissed by the police takes it upon herself to try and find out what happened, giving her a sense of purpose that she hasn’t had for many years. As well hearing from Rose, the narrative is interspersed with entries from Finn’s diary who we soon discover is being stalked and terrorised by a man he rejected and we quickly see how scary this is and how quickly it destroys Finn’s life.
I was shocked by the homophobia on display in this novel, especially from the police. In my naivety, I thought this sort of behaviour, didn’t happen in this day and age and even messaged the author to ask him about it. He sent me a link to an article you can find here.
I really enjoyed this thriller – the pacing was good and the threads that brought it all together were well placed. I had so much sympathy for Rose and what she had been through and I think that is what set this apart from other thrillers. Sometimes you get given a little backstory to the main protagonist but Rose is set up so well as a character, I ended up feeling really invested in her and ended up feeling much more involved in the book than I would have done normally.
Thank you to Jack Jordan for my copy which I received as part of a Bookstagram tour!
About the author:
Jack Jordan is the global number one bestselling author of Anything for Her (2015), My Girl (2016), A Woman Scorned (2018), and Before Her Eyes (2018). He wrote his first novel at seventeen and self-published his first two e-book bestsellers by the age of twenty four. He lives in East Anglia.