Then She Was Gone

I’d been trying to work my way through a sci-go book and finally gave up and decided to start Watching You by Lisa Jewell. Literally within 24 hours of that decision, my mother-in-law has sent Then She Was Gone home with my husband for me. So, it seemed a sign that it was time to get in to Lisa Jewell’s books.

Then She Was Gone is the story of Laurel Mack, mother of three who is still coping with the aftermath of her 15-year-old daughter’s disappearance 10 years ago. People don’t just vanish into thin air, but Ellie did, and Laurel’s life fell apart.

Now she’s finally getting a degree of closure, or was, until she meets her new boyfriend’s daughter, who looks remarkably like Ellie. As little clues start revealing themselves, Laurel begins to see a whole new story surrounding Ellie’s disappearance, one that affirms her disbelief in the police’s runaway narrative. But in the end, will the truth be the closure she seeks, or will it wreck her life anew?

Right off, I liked this book better than Watching You. I liked the storyline better, and I liked that we didn’t have a main character claiming they were genetically hardwired to make bad decisions, essentially.

In what I’ve come to recognize as her style, Jewell drops enough hints to lead you to her conclusion, but keeps enough hidden so that the story could go several ways. She keeps you uncertain, reevaluating your assumptions with each new revelation, and I like that. Her short chapters make the book seem to go by that much quicker, and make it perfect for fitting one or two in during a 15-minute break at work.

Overall, I’ve enjoyed my experience with Lisa Jewell, and she’ll definitely be an author I both recommend, and keep an eye out for when the opportunity comes to get new books.

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