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The Stepson

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This frightening novel will have you question who in your family you can trust.  When Lorraine's best friend (her mom) goes missing after a terrifying and cryptic phone call, she begins to seriously worry about her.  Since the police are not taking Lorraine seriously, she has to take it upon herself to delve into her parent's past and try and locate her mom.

The book is fast paced with plenty of "jump scares."  Well written!
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I enjoyed this book by Diane Saxon its a gripping story and would recommend it. This is the first book I have read by this author and would definitely read more.
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WOW what a page turner!! I was hooked.
After lorraines fathers death,  sandra hs wife isnt coping.lorraine her daughter is having her own crisis, her husband has left her to look after 2 children on her own..Henry lorraines dad was married before and had had a son, when trevors mom died he was due to go and live with his dad and sandra but sandra was convinced he killed her newborn son.. Did he??? When sandra goes missing the family and police are in a race to save her, where could she be? Who has her? Why????. I couldnt put this book down, fantastic read
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The story starts on a gripping note and the suspense is maintained until the end. The Stepson by Diane Saxon is a gripping domestic thriller with a dash of creepiness. The mystery behind family secrets and Sandra's sudden disappearance kept me guessing till the end. The flashbacks scenes are heart-wrenching, and one cannot help but feel sad for those who were involved in the tragedy - even the 'so-called' bad guys.

The 'stepson' is a villainous character, or at least Sandra thinks so. Sandra is no saint either. I didn't like her. Maybe, she was right all along, maybe her motherly instincts knew better. But she ill-treated a young boy and left him to fend for himself. So, it obvious that he would come back one day to exact revenge. 

Lorraine was doing pretty well until she wasn't. I was quite annoyed when, almost at the end of the story, she trusted someone whom she hardly knew. She was given the gist of her parents' past and yet she chose to ignore the warning signs. 

Don't get me wrong when I say I like negative characters in a story. So, when certain characters' true nature was revealed, I was expecting a twisty, mind-blowing ending. It's twisty, all right. But it felt a tad rushed.

Overall, this was an engrossing and interesting domestic thriller. Kept me hooked from start to finish. I am looking forward to reading more of Diane Saxon's novels as I really loved her storytelling.
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Diane Saxon has done it again with another brilliant book!. This has twists and turns and just when you think you know what’s happening you’re made to think again. I absolutely love Diane’s books, they keep you on the edge of your seat and the plots are so believable. This story focuses on Lorraine, a mother of two young children, whose mother goes missing. She soon finds out that her parents had secrets and she struggles to make sense of everything and who to trust. A fantastic thriller with brilliant characters. I also loved how it flowed, using different timelines so that you got the backstory of each character and that helped to make sense of their actions. Can’t wait for her next book! Thanks to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for the ARC.
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Another book to keep you on your toes!! This was such a strong start, you can imagine the terror both Lorraine and her mum felt during the phone call and how Lorraine searches to find answers.

The different timelines pulls the story in and you can’t help feeling sorry for the characters, (well to an extent) The twists keep coming and the sinister personalities keep popping up! I was generally freaked out in parts (upstairs bathroom) such clever writing from the author!
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Genre ~ psychological thriller
Publication date ~ June 19, 2023
Page Count ~ 376
POV ~ multiple 3rd
Featuring ~ multiple timelines, missing person, murder, baby death

Our main characters:
Lorraine ~ daughter of Sandra & Henry, divorced with 2 small children, Sophie & Elijah. Trevor ~ Henry's son from his first marriage.

Sandra calls Lorraine around 3:30am scared that someone is going to break in and gives her a cryptic message before disconnecting. Lorraine can't leave her children alone and doesn't want to wake them, so when morning comes she goes around to her house and Mom is not there. The police don't take her seriously and think she is just taking a breather for a few days since she's still upset about Henry's passing 9 months earlier.

I quite enjoyed the multiple timeline in this one. It was easy to follow along with and totally built up the suspense.
Lorraine's timeline begins with the countdown of when her mom made the phone call to her right before she went missing. Since this was just every few chapters if made it seem like she's missing for a lot longer and like the police weren't doing anything to help find Sandra. She makes some questionable choices for being a 30 year old single mom towards the end there, too.
Trevor's timeline begin 31 years ago right up to the present and we slowly see what kind of person he really is.

Overall, I enjoyed my first experience with this author and I'll be back for more of her thrillers.
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Wow this book is brilliant, I couldn't put it down. The stepson has had years to build up resentment towards the family, his hatred has no bounds and it has turned him into the evil, cruel, manipulating, cunning man that he has become..He doesn't know what love is, he was accused of murdering a poor helpless baby but could a child really committ such an heinous crime. A definite 5*from me
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Lorraine's mum Sandra has not been the same since the sudden death of her husband Henry but when she phones Lorraine in the dead of night, mentions a brother she  knows nothing about and says "he's here and you're next" Lorraine just assumes Sandra has been drinking. But when she visits Sandra's house the next day and finds no sign of her then Lorraine begins to worry. With the police not interested, Lorraine has to find her own clues to discover where her mum may be, but this will bring up alot of information that Lorraine has no idea about, throwing her childhood into disarray. 
This is a typical Diane Saxon novel, it's a fast paced, enthralling novel. Not all characters are reliable or likeable but in my opinion this just adds to the storyline, making you wonder who you should trust and who is lying. 
Thanks go to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for the advanced copy, I'm under no obligation to leave my review
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Thanks you to #NetGalley and #BoldwoodBooks for the read and review of #TheStepson by #DianeSaxon. This book was amazing. Loved the characters and their lies, deceits and abandonment. More than 5 ⭐️.
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A good well written read from this author from the beginning until the end with plenty of twists and turns throughout which kept me involved in the storyline.

The characters were well described and easy to read about, overall a great book which I can recommend.

Thank you to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for this ARC.
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Thank You Boldwood books and NetGalley for my ARC of this. Another brilliant read by Diane Saxon - very apt title as the whole story revolves around the stepson.  Had me on the edge of my seat unexpected twists and turns and a thoroughly enjoyable read.
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I always enjoy Diane Saxons novels as she has a wonderful way of writing interesting characters that seem to leap from the page and although I didn’t think this was one of her best it’s still an entertaining read as a standalone thriller but I do wish she’d revisit her Jenna Morgan series
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Loraine was shocked when she received a phone call from her mum at 3am she seemed terrified and said something that shook Loraine to the core. At first she wondered if her mum had been drinking but she couldn’t let go of that niggling doubt that something was terribly wrong. 

Loraine spent the next few hours worrying about her mum however there was little she could do as she had her 2 young children both in bed and no one to look after them. 

Later that day Loraine investigated her mums house and decided to report her to the police as a missing person, at first they dismissed Loraine but she knew there was more to this than her mum running off as a spur of the moment decision. 

A persistent Loraine does more investigating and eventually gains the help from the police to try and find her mother. Little does Loraine know that throughout her whole life her parents have been lying to her. She realises that her family have kept secrets from her much darker than she could ever imagine and she discovers that she has a half brother named Trevor who brings a whole heap of trouble with him wherever her goes. 

I really enjoyed the stepbrother it was nice to read a thriller that goes off on a slightly different path than many of the others do. I found this book to be an exciting read with lots of secrets and plot twists to keep the reader interested. 

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and he author for an advance copy of this book in exchange for this review.
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This is the third psychological thriller by Diane Saxon I've read. It ticked all the boxes for an engaging read - dysfunctional family, estranged family, and more!

The book was fast-paced, and I loved the flashbacks to the past which rounded out the story and filled in the blanks which were essential to the present making sense.

I love Diane Saxon's writing style, and of the three books I've read of hers, this is my favourite!

Thanks to Boldwood Books and NetGalley for a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
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this Author has done it again. A very gripping and addictive twisty read. they say always born good and one always born bad. What would you do if a past you never knew about affects the present? This is what happens to Lorraine. A phone call in the night very scared saying her brother is back but Lorraine has no brother and when she goes to her mum s house she not there.  the police not worried so it is up to Lorraine to put all the pieces together. A very can't stop reading book.
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Who do you believe…And who do you trust… 

The was such a thrilling plot and I was completely invested in it from the start. Its prologue gave me goosebumps and I was desperate to know what happened to Sandra.

Past and present narratives gave a clear picture of events and they merged together well. The more it progressed the more intense it became and my anxiety levels were at an all time high!

Secrets and lies were exposed, each were as thrilling as the last and its plot twists certainly packed a punch!

All round this was an exciting read, with one very chilling character. It kept me on the edge of my seat and the pages turning long into the night.

Thank you to Diane Saxon, Boldwood Books and NetGalley for allowing me to read a advanced copy of The Stepson, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily
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Who do you believe and who do you trust.

Widow Sandra Leivesley early morning just after 3am a car pulls up in her drive and she is shocked to see who it is, ringing her daughter Lorraine who lives only 10 minutes away all she said was, "He's here your dads death was no accident, he's here your brother Trevor, to kill me off, you and the kids will be next" was her mother drunk? she didn't know who to call, after sorting the kids out and drop off at the school she lets herself into her mums house and its empty she will never forget the sense of her words and calls the police.
They are not taking her seriously and she hasn't got a brother so a hunt is on to find her mum. And the book travels back to Sandra's story.

This is such a chilling story, that sent shivers down my spine, chapter after chapter.
I love this authors work and all her books are full of surprises and different in their own way.
You grow to love a character then you hate them as you read on.
A totally magnificent end that will open your eyes with a big wow.
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Thanks to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for the ARC of this book.
The Stepson is a joy to read. It is fast paced and moving as finding out about an unknown brother must totally blindside you. Unfortunately I found the ending much to fast and somewhat of a let down. The main characters as in Trevor and Lorraine were unfortunately not very likeable at all. I felt I should have liked Lorraine more but somehow I didn’t.
Not the best of Diane Saxon’s books but well worth a read. Would give it 4.5 stars if I could. Looking forward to the next one.
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Ive loved all of Diane saxons previous books and was delighted to get my hands on this arc of The Stepson.

I raced through this book eager to know where Lorraine's Mum had disappeared to in the middle of the night and who she was so scared of.  We meet a few long lost relatives along the way as the answers emerge.

A great read

4 stars
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