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Monday, June 19, 2017

#allthebookreviews: Here and Gone by HaylenBeck @HaylenBeck @crownpublishing @jessicamapreviews

Here and Gone by Haylen Beck
Crown Publishing
Publishing 6/20/17

It's shaping up to be a good first month for #allthebookreviews.  This one sit, fast paced thriller rated the same stars from both Jessica and I.  I suggest you put this on your TBR stat!

Goodreads Synopsis:

Here and Gone is a gripping, wonderfully tense suspense thriller about a mother's desperate fight to recover her stolen children from corrupt authorities.. It begins with a woman fleeing through Arizona with her kids in tow, trying to escape an abusive marriage. When she's pulled over by an unsettling local sheriff, things soon go awry and she is taken into custody. Only when she gets to the station, her kids are gone. And then the cops start saying they never saw any kids with her, that if they're gone than she must have done something with them... Meanwhile, halfway across the country a man hears the frenzied news reports about the missing kids, which are eerily similar to events in his own past. As the clock ticks down on the search for the lost children, he too is drawn into the desperate fight for their return.

My Thoughts:

4.5 breathless stars!

Hasn't Audra been through enough? She has been under her husband's thumb long enough. Escaping years of abuse, she takes off across country with her two children, Sean and Louise. Anxious and paranoid, she takes the long way from New York to California. Being pulled over by Sheriff Whiteside becomes her next nightmare. He arrests her, separates her from her children. Taken into custody, she asks where her kids are. "What children?" Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaat?! Due to her past, the media and the law enforcement believes she has done something with them and she beings to question herself as well. With no one to turn to, how can she prove she's innocent when she falters with her own sanity? Enter Danny Lee - someone who has been through the same type of situation just a mere 5 years ago. Can he help her while also finally getting revenge?

Holy Mars Bars, guys! This is a page turner of a psychological/domestic thriller. Read this baby in just one sitting and couldn't get enough. The author takes us behind the eyes of Audra, veering back and forth in her current position, to her past relationship with her husband. Beck also takes us into the mind of precocious child, Sean as he tries to remain strong to protect his little sister. We also see into the minds of the law enforcement and Danny and each of their backgrounds. Beck manages to go back and forth through these characters seamlessly - each short chapter leaving you hanging. This book is fast paced, action packed and extremely well written. I kept off half a star only because I had one lingering question at the end I wanted an answer to. But I think if the author leaves me wanting more, they've done their job ;)

Thank you Crown Publishing for this awesome read in return for my honest review.

Jessica's Thoughts:

After reading the synopsis for HERE AND GONE by Haylen Beck, I couldn't wait to read it. The unreliable narrator paired with, did her kids really exist or were they all in her head? I know they're completely different, but it made me think of the premise of Flightplan (movie with Jodie Foster). You want to believe the mother but then you start to question her. 

We begin with Audra Kinney and her children, Sean (11) and Louise (6) and they're on the run. Audra escaped her abusive marriage but now Patrick, her ex-husband, is enlisting the help of Child Services to try and obtain custody of both children. She and the kids are leaving New York for the safely of California - right now they've pulled over at a roadside store in the middle of the desert in Arizona. With the impending custody ruling, Audra is nervous when seeing a police officer parked at the roadside store. 

A little way down the road, Audra is pulled over by Sheriff Robert Whiteside. He pulled her over because her vehicle is overloaded, this increases the possibility of veering out of control on the gravel road. He offers to help drive part of her stuff to the motel she's planning on staying at, as they're moving boxes around, Sheriff Whiteside discovers large amounts of marijuana inside her vehicle. She is arrested for possession and the Sheriff calls in Deputy Collins to watch her children while she is brought into custody. After she's booked at the station she asks about her children and to her horror she hears, "What children?". 

With children involved, the media coverage goes crazy. A man halfway across the country hears the story and it's eerily similar to what happened to his wife years ago. So he decides that he's going to do everything he can to help her. 

Haylen Beck did an incredible job building the suspense and making a page turning thriller. Creating complex characters, the reader almost immediately sympathizes with Audra and her constant struggle. She does the right thing by leaving an abusive marriage, just to be met with nothing but obstacles. Now the real issue - where are her children? If you want a good fast paced thriller, then I'd highly recommend this one to you! 

I give this 4.5/5 stars!

Huge thanks to Crown Publishing for these copies in return for our honest reviews!

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