Sarah Graves

The Girls She Left Behind

Read it if you’re looking for a fast-paced thriller with a truly abhorrent villain and some interesting twists.

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The Thoughts

To be fair, thriller/mystery stories are not always my favorite. And yet I sometimes read them. Usually I read them because, like this one, they are available when I need a book to grab. This is the second in a series, the first of which I read and didn’t hate. So I read this one too. It did have some pretty good plot twists, some satisfyingly evil bad guys, and lots of conflicted characters. I just didn’t feel like the setup (which I won’t spoil here) was particularly original. And the actions of one character in particular (upon which the entire story is founded) seem very implausible, to say the least.

The Feels

This book worked far better on an emotional level than on a logical one. I love a complex villain. I find it compelling when plots are moved by people making bad decisions for flawed reasons. Although this book was true to the genre on sometimes going over-the-top with how this all spun out, it did so in a way that felt pretty satisfying. It was definitely a dark read though, with bleak characters and violence. Still, so much about it is so utterly unrealistic none of that really hit home for me.

The Verdict

Read it if you’re looking for a fast-paced thriller with a truly abhorrent villain and some interesting twists.

Skip it if you are bothered by violence, characters who experience trauma, or a plot that favors thrills over facts.

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