I Found You by Lisa Jewell
Publishing Date: April 25, 2017
Publisher: Atria Books
Family Life & Suspense
The Premise from the Publisher: "A young bride, a lonely single mother, and an amnesiac man of dubious origin lie at the heart of New York Times bestselling author Lisa Jewell’s next suspenseful drama. In a windswept British seaside town, single mom Alice Lake finds a man sitting on the beach outside her house. He has no name, no jacket, and no idea how he got there. Against her better judgment, she invites him inside. Meanwhile, in a suburb of London, twenty-one-year-old Lily Monrose has only been married for three weeks. When her new husband fails to come home from work one night she is left stranded in a new country where she knows no one. Then the police tell her that her husband never existed. Twenty-three years earlier, Gray and Kirsty are teenagers on a summer holiday with their parents. Their annual trip to the quaint seaside town is passing by uneventfully, until an enigmatic young man starts paying extra attention to Kirsty. Something about him makes Gray uncomfortable—and it’s not just that he’s playing the role of protective older brother. Two decades of secrets, a missing husband, and a man with no memory are at the heart of this brilliant new novel" (Atria Books).
My overall thoughts and review: I love a good thrilling read especially with a family dynamic. So many of the books today are focused on a love relationship, and while that's nice, I like seeing family dynamics at work as well. When I first read the premise of this book, I knew I wanted to read it since it had similar elements to Broadchurch (one of my favorite shows ever) with a mystery to be solved and of course, a seaside town setting. I was also really intrigued by three story-lines happening at once, and like I said, there seemed to be a focus on family with the story-line of Kirsty and Gray. I must admit that in the beginning, it was a bit hard to follow all the different narratives (I think that's why it took me so long to finish, since I read it super slowly to catch all the details), but soon it became evident that somehow each story had a mystery: who was the man sitting outside her house, for Alice - Lily was missing her husband, and the siblings, Gray and Kirsty, were trying to figure out what this mystery character, Mark, really wanted. I really liked that the story of the two siblings took place 23 years earlier, so whatever had happened to them is linked to the present time. Even though it comes down to two possible outcomes for the ending, I really did enjoy it and I have to admit, I thought the ~other~ outcome was going to happen for the most part. I was genuinely surprised but also sad to learn of the truth of everything since it's absolutely heartbreaking what happened. I will say that the story resolves itself quite nicely and it's a nice departure from the regular open endings of thriller novels. It was also paced nicely, but unfortunately the reason why this book only gets 4 stars from me is simply because I wasn't too invested in the story-line of Lily. I just was not interested and did not really care much for the character, and I think because in contrast to Alice, she was in a way, too dependent on another character (she begins to rely on her husbands friend and it just becomes too much imo). My favorite character was definitely Alice and seeing her dynamics with her kids. She is genuinely a good person and I really liked that she owned her flaws in a really empowering way. I really enjoyed this book and it is in the same vein as Clare Mackintosh's I Let You Go; so if you loved that, you will love this one! It's my first time reading something by Lisa Jewell, but it surely won't be the last :)
My rating of the book: ✮✮✮✮ (4/5 stars)
Available for purchase at:
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Disclaimer: An advanced reader's copy of the book was provided by Simon and Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review. All opinions of the book are my own.