Bring Me Back by B A Paris

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Bring Me Back by B A Paris

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Category: Crime
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A twisty psychological thriller which put me in mind of Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn but it's nowhere near as long. The writing is excellent, characterisation very good and the ending disappointing.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 368/7h37m Date: March 2018
Publisher: HQ
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0008244873

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Returning from a skiing holiday Finn pulled in at one of those stops you wouldn't use if you weren't quite so desperate and didn't think you could last out to the next filling station. Finn went off to the toilet block leaving Layla in the car. When he returned Layla was missing, never to be found and Finn was lucky to escape being charged with murder. Twelve years on Finn has made a new life with Ellen, Layla's sister, but the police tell him that a former neighbour has reported seeing Layla near their old home. Is it her? Finn's worried about what she wants. Ellen worries that this is happening because she and Finn have announced that they're getting married. But what's happening with all the Russian dolls which are being left where Finn and Ellen can find them?

I loved the premise of this book, but was less impressed by the delivery, with chapters coming from different viewpoints. It reminded me too much of Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, which had rave reviews from many people, including Bookbag, but which I found tedious when I listened to an audio download. If you enjoyed Gone Girl you may well enjoy the format of Bring Me Back - the writing is excellent and the character development top class. Finn is the sort of man you're constantly on the edge of not really liking: he's totally self-centred and has little to no concern for anyone else. He has some good friends, but it wasn't always easy to see why.

I did have a problem with the plot though - and that was with the ending. I enjoyed the build up with the idea that a woman could disappear, completely without trace, and then, twelve years later reappear. I could understand that Finn might have told the truth about what happened at that stop in France, but perhaps not the whole truth about what had gone before. We all have selective memories where such matters are concerned. What I couldn't handle was the ending. Without giving any spoilers, I simply didn't believe that the idea held water. I was grateful that I was listening to an audio download (which I bought myself): if it had been a physical book it might have been thrown against the wall.

The audiobook, narrated by Kevin Hely and Catherine McCarron is good and the listening very easy. I'd happily listen to more from either or both of them.

I'd like to thank the publishers for making a copy of the book available to the Bookbag.

If this book appeals then you might also enjoy Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell. For a much better book from B A Paris, try The Therapist.

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