Cover Image: The Stepson

The Stepson

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Member Reviews

Diane Saxon is a wonderful psychological thriller/domestic noir author and I always enjoy her work. The Stepson is good and will be successful. If you are looking for a really, really dysfunctional family, this one is for you. There are children no one knows about, multiple possible killers, a truly creepy and terrifying man, bad choices and decisions. Only a dog, Ghost, comes out unscathed.

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Firstly thank you Netgalley for this Arc

Wow another gripping page turner by this brilliant author

Who knew what that sinister phonecall would lead to

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A strange phone call from her mother in the early hours of the morning leaves Lorraine wondering what to do where she goes missing,while searching for her family secrets hidden for years rise to the surface.
Told from the point of view of Trevor in the past and Lorraine in the present.
For me not one of the authors best I disliked all the characters and found the ending a bit rushed.
Thanks to Boldwood books and Netgalley for the ARC.

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Wow! Another creepy great read by Diane Saxon. This book was awesome. Great delivery of multiple timelines and characters. Literally felt something (good or bad) with every single character. Fabulous twists, turns and reveals.
Highly recommend
Thank you NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this book

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Such a slow burner but a great read that kept me glued to the story from the first page and while initially felt sorry for Trevor, that wasn’t long changing but he wasn’t the only unpleasant character as I
hated Sandra from the beginning and honestly she got what she deserved.

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Lorraine gets a strange early morning call from her mother. Something about her brother- except Lorraine doesn't have a brother, or does she? Upon arriving at her mother's house she is nowhere to be found. Lorraine reports this to the police who don't take her seriously. Now Lorraine needs to figure out what her mother meant on the phone call and where she could be.

The opening sentences draw you right into this fast paced psychological thriller. The timeline alternates between the present and decades earlier. I thought it was pretty easy to keep the timelines straight and they are clearly labeled. I can appreciate the author heading the chapter by hours since phone call rather than an actual time. I find it hard to track dates and times so this method worked well for me. The twists are good and I didn't see the ending coming. I always love a book that I can't predict the ending to!

Thanks to Netgalley and Boldwood Books for a digital ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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Synopsis (from Netgalley, the provider of the book for me to review.)
When your whole life becomes one big lie…The night my mum disappeared, after a panicked 3 am phone call, I knew something was wrong.
The police tried to reassure me. There had to be a logical explanation they said – perhaps she’s taking a break after the tragic death of my father.
But I know my mum.
Or do I?
She would never leave without telling me.
Or would she?
The harder I look, the more I discover deep, dark family secrets I was not privy to.
Worrying secrets I was never meant to know.
Which means my parents have lied to me my whole life.
But why?
Who can I turn to? Trust?
Were they scared of something in their past?
Or were they trying to protect me?
Has mum gone of her own free will?
Or has someone taken her?
Diane Saxon’s compelling new thriller will have you questioning who you can trust to keep your family safe.

I know from reading the synopsis that you will wonder where the stepson has a role in this book, but he does ... this is one spooky book. It was well crafted and will hold your attention for hours: if you take it to the beach (or back yard, porch) don't forget to reapply your SPF as you will lose track of time. Enjoyable even if just sitting in front of the a/c or fan during what it supposed to be a record-breaking HOT summer (oh, yeah ... not) as it is a wonderful little thriller to pick up and add to your TBR pile.

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Lorraine gets a very early morning call from her mother- a rather strange one- something about Lorraine's brother. Lorraine, to her knowledge, doesn't have a brother but vaguely remembers an argument between her parents mentioning a boy when she was young. Her own young daughter has mentioned seeing her (now deceased) grandfather through the fence at her school, something Lorraine puts down to imagination. On arriving at her mothers house, she is nowhere to be found and her things are still in place. Lorraine thinks this out of character and reports it to the police who don’t take her seriously. Where is her mother and what did her last strange words really mean?

This very quickly draws the reader in- there’s a tension from the start. Lorraine comes across as a sensible, well rounded person who I took to and liked. There are several timelines each chapter clearly marked which works well and I didnt find this at all confusing. There’s a lot of too-ing and fro-ing to begin with for Lorraine to try and put together pieces of the puzzle which nicely builds her character as a likeable and sensible person.

It's a very cleverly thought out plot which took me by surprise at the end- nice one! If you like plot twists then this one most certainly has this in spades. A highly entertaining read.
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