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You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost... Claudia Morgan-Brown finally has it all. Pregnant with a much-wanted first baby of her own, she has a happily established family of two small step-sons and a loving husband with a great career. But she is also committed to her full-time job as a social worker, and her husband tr You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost... Claudia Morgan-Brown finally has it all. Pregnant with a much-wanted first baby of her own, she has a happily established family of two small step-sons and a loving husband with a great career. But she is also committed to her full-time job as a social worker, and her husband travels often. So when Claudia hires Zoe to help her around the house in anticipation of the baby’s arrival, it seems like the answer to her prayers. But despite Zoe's glowing recommendations and instant rapport with the children, there's something about her that Claudia cannot trust. Moreover, there has been a series of violent attacks on pregnant women in the area, and Claudia becomes acutely aware of her vulnerability. With her husband out of town for work and her family far away, who will be there to protect her? And why does she feel unsettled about Zoe? Realizing appearances can be deceiving even in her seemingly perfect world, Claudia digs deeper into Zoe’s blurry past and begins to wonder – how far would someone go to have a child of her own? Riveting from its very first pages, Until You’re Mine is a multilayered masterwork of twisted, psychological suspense. Readers of Before I Go to Sleep and Turn of Mind will be enthralled by this multilayered novel, featuring a twisted plot that ends in a breathtaking and shocking finale.


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You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost... Claudia Morgan-Brown finally has it all. Pregnant with a much-wanted first baby of her own, she has a happily established family of two small step-sons and a loving husband with a great career. But she is also committed to her full-time job as a social worker, and her husband tr You're alone. You're vulnerable. And you have something that someone else wants. At any cost... Claudia Morgan-Brown finally has it all. Pregnant with a much-wanted first baby of her own, she has a happily established family of two small step-sons and a loving husband with a great career. But she is also committed to her full-time job as a social worker, and her husband travels often. So when Claudia hires Zoe to help her around the house in anticipation of the baby’s arrival, it seems like the answer to her prayers. But despite Zoe's glowing recommendations and instant rapport with the children, there's something about her that Claudia cannot trust. Moreover, there has been a series of violent attacks on pregnant women in the area, and Claudia becomes acutely aware of her vulnerability. With her husband out of town for work and her family far away, who will be there to protect her? And why does she feel unsettled about Zoe? Realizing appearances can be deceiving even in her seemingly perfect world, Claudia digs deeper into Zoe’s blurry past and begins to wonder – how far would someone go to have a child of her own? Riveting from its very first pages, Until You’re Mine is a multilayered masterwork of twisted, psychological suspense. Readers of Before I Go to Sleep and Turn of Mind will be enthralled by this multilayered novel, featuring a twisted plot that ends in a breathtaking and shocking finale.

30 review for Until You're Mine

  1. 4 out of 5

    Erika Schoeps

    1.5 Stars Disclaimer: I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. BEFORE YOU BEGIN READING THIS REVIEW, PLEASE KNOW THAT IT IS LOADED WITH SPOILERS. You should honestly read this review anyway, because I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone anyways. I'm finally that person writing a negative review in contrast to all the many positive, glowing reviews. When I first read the description of this book and entered the giveaway, I was SO excited. I even told a bunch of my friends about it, an 1.5 Stars Disclaimer: I won this book in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. BEFORE YOU BEGIN READING THIS REVIEW, PLEASE KNOW THAT IT IS LOADED WITH SPOILERS. You should honestly read this review anyway, because I wouldn't recommend this book to anyone anyways. I'm finally that person writing a negative review in contrast to all the many positive, glowing reviews. When I first read the description of this book and entered the giveaway, I was SO excited. I even told a bunch of my friends about it, and created a waiting list of people who wanted it after I was done. Go ahead. Read the description and tell me that doesn't sound awesome. I know you want to read it. I got this book and began it as soon as I had a little bit of time on my hands. I was pulled in immediately. But, even at the beginning, there were hints that this experience was about to be turned sour. This book is about a pregnant woman who hires a nanny to help her with her existing children and the child she is about to have. Her husband is in the Navy, and is always gone, which supposedly adds and element of creepiness. We witness this story through the minds of the female detective taking care of the case, the pregnant mother, and the nanny. From the beginning, we get to read the thoughts and actions of the suspicious nanny. The nanny is constantly having suspicious thoughts, where she gets sentimental and talks about how she is going to ruin the lives of the family she is working for. This tirade of thoughts is so constant, its annoying. It felt as if the author believed that I was mentally impaired, and needed to shove this information down my throat until I was choking on it. SERIOUSLY, I GET IT, THE NANNY IS HAVING SUSPICIOUS THOUGHTS. Why didn't you just freaking include a description of a red arrow floating above her head? For the rest of this review, I'm just going to put character's names and then record all the problems and inconsistencies in their behavior. Nanny (Zoe/Heather): As I said before, the nanny won't stop thinking these red herring thoughts that will annoy the crap out of you. This continues until "the twist" is revealed. The author tries to tell you through the nanny's thoughts that this woman REALLY wants a baby to please her crazy significant other, and this is reflected in the nanny's constant thoughts about securing a baby. But, as we reach the end, we learn that she doesn't actually want a baby, and that she isn't trying at all. Wait, so then why was she having thoughts about wanting a baby so bad? Why is she using a pregnancy test if she hasn't had sex with anyone? Why did she break it in half if she doesn't actually give a shit? The author focuses less on the bigger picture of how these pieces fit together, and again, questions your intelligence by failing to match up behaviors and thoughts from the beginning of the book with the real characters revealed at the end. It's absolutely lazy, and it completely took me out of the story. Later on, we have two more huge inconsistencies. The nanny, (who is later revealed to be an undercover agent), breaks into the husband's study to search for files. The pregnant mother is a social worker, and has the files for a woman who was killed by a murderer trying to cut out her baby. As the reader, we've had it rammed into our minds that the nanny is this murderer. Anyways, the nanny breaks into the husband's office, and proceeds to take pictures of the murdered woman's file. This makes sense with what we know at the time. At the end of the book, when the nanny is rumored to be an undercover agent, we learn that the husband was actually part of some money laundering operation (totally random plot point that comes out of nowhere that the author seemed to throw in because she had no idea what she doing). So wait, why was the nanny taking pictures of the murdered woman's file? That's completely irrelevant to her supposed purpose in the house. Yet again, the author forgot to match up the past self with the real self. That's just lazy writing. Last inconsistency. The police are trying to solve the pregnant women murders, and they are led to the nanny. They interview the nanny multiple times, and each time she turns bright red, acts incredibly nervous, and seems uncomfortable. This makes sense at the time with what the reader knows, which is that the nanny is totally the murderer. It doesn't make sense when we later learn that the nanny is an undercover agent. She's been UNDERCOVER for weeks, and suddenly she's incapable of lying in this situation? Lazy, stupid writing. Either she's a frighteningly incompetent secret agent, or the author just didn't feel like making this story plausible. What's weird is that the female detective acts really, really, weird about the interviews. She talks about how the nanny seemed to be totally in control of the interview. They were literally 3-4 descriptions in a row of this nanny acting nervous and turning bright raspberry multiple times, in a row. Why the hell does this female detective find this so coy? This isn't even a lack of connection between past self and real self, it just doesn't make any sense at all. Pregnant Woman (Ends up being the murderer and is faking her pregnancy): Come on readers. I read so many reviews for this book, and they all talked about the "amazing twist" at the end. I have no idea what constitutes a twist for you, but this definitely isn't it. There are no hints at this coming, and it doesn't match this woman's behavior throughout the book at all. And the twist has no complexity or building up either. All of a sudden, the killer is revealed. This is just dumb. The worst thing that bothered me (not an inconsistency, just something really ridiculous), was that the pregnant woman discovers that her nanny BROKE INTO HER HUSBAND'S OFFICE AND TOOK PICTURES OF PRIVATE GOVERNMENT FILES. She proceeds to NOT FIRE THE NANNY, and instead agonizes about hurting her nanny's feelings. I want to emphasize how ridiculous this is, but unlike the author, I do not believe you lack intelligence. The Detectives: Another problem with the author: Artificial extension of the plot. The author belabored and artificially filled the story by making these detectives act like bumbling fools. At one point, the female detective failed to follow up on a lead, and the male detective literally asked her why she didn't. The author prolonged things by making her characters act like idiots, AND THEN LITERALLY HAD THE OTHER DETECTIVE POINT OUT THAT THEY WERE ACTING DUMB. There's the other point that I already brought up in which they interview the nanny. At this point, the nanny is looking pretty suspicious. They interview her, and during this interview she blushes, acts nervous, and basically has "I'm guilty" printed on her forehead. The female detective even points out that the nanny is a horrendous liar. They leave the interview and seem incredibly suspicious, but they fail to tail her, investigate her, and report this horribly suspicious incident to anyone. Come on guys. The worst part of the detective's story is their daughter. The author wanted to extend her already lengthy, horrible novel by adding a side plot that is stupid, frustrating, and completely irrelevant to the main plot. The female detective and the male detective are married, and have two daughters. The female detective comes home to her daughter telling her she's moving out and getting married at 17. I don't know how realistically the author handled this situation, because I've never been involved in anything like this, but it seemed contrived. The daughter gives her mother a nasty attitude about the whole situation and acts like a horribly spoiled brat, while the mother and father fail to take any constructive action at all. As annoying as this sideplot was, it was also totally unnecessary. I didn't care about the detective's daughter before, during, or after the conflict... she wasn't relevant to the story. Why would the author add this? In a technical aspect, this book wasn't horrible. As frequently as I bashed the author, her writing style was not horrible, it just wasn't anything special. The writing itself exists simply to hurry the plot along without embellishment. As much as this book was supposed to be a thriller, it didn't convey a lot of tension. The gaping plot holes always prevented me from being immersed in the story, and the constant red herrings and obvious actions of the nanny didn't help either. As much as everything fell apart, the author did one thing correctly. The last sentence is phenomenal and incredibly creepy, although when I think about it, it didn't really make sense... unless all the cops were really as stupid as they seemed to be. Save yourself the trouble and don't read this book.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Li'l Owl

    Nothing Is As It Seems. Not Even Close! I’ve always wanted a baby, even when I was little and didn’t know where they came from. It’s been an ache deep in my soul for as long as I can remember— a sickness, a malignant desire creeping through my body, winding its way around my veins, twisting along the billions of nerve pathways, wrapping up my brain in a hormone-fogged desire. All I wanted was to be a mother. A little baby girl. Is that too much to ask? Claudia “Anyway, Zoe Harper, nanny extraordina Nothing Is As It Seems. Not Even Close! I’ve always wanted a baby, even when I was little and didn’t know where they came from. It’s been an ache deep in my soul for as long as I can remember— a sickness, a malignant desire creeping through my body, winding its way around my veins, twisting along the billions of nerve pathways, wrapping up my brain in a hormone-fogged desire. All I wanted was to be a mother. A little baby girl. Is that too much to ask? Claudia “Anyway, Zoe Harper, nanny extraordinaire, is coming for coffee tomorrow morning at eleven.” I grin. “Fine,” James says, switching the channel to Sky News. He starts hoovering up all the stock market stuff and moans about his pension and investments. I can’t really see that far ahead— being old, retiring, needing to draw off James’s inherited pot. I can only see as far as the end of this pregnancy, having my baby, being a complete family. Becoming a real mother, finally. Zoe “So,” I say when the din has subsided, “you’ll want to know all about my experience.” I have it all prepared, learned off pat. Right down to the color of my last employer’s eyes and the engine size of their car. Greeny-brown and two point five liters. I am ready for anything. ******** Ever had the feeling that after all the hundreds of mystery crime books you've read, you think you've got this one all worked out? Don't count on it!! Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes is the first in the DC Lorraine Fisher series. There's not much I want to say about this book as I don't want to give anything away so I'll just say that this was a whopper of a book! The author weaves an intriguing and believable storyline with characters you can't help but like, especially DC Fisher and Claudia. Despite my misgivings about Zoe, I grew to like her quite a lot. Samantha Hayes expertly crafted novel had me right where she wanted me. Hook, line, and sinker! I already have a few of her other novels on my shelves and if they are anything like this one, I look forward to the challenge of working out the answer to the next mystery! Stay tuned!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    This is an absolutely stunning read. It is a psychological thriller told from three different points of view, that of Claudia, her nanny Zoe and Lorraine, a detective. Claudia and Zoe's stories are told in the first person, and because each character has a very distinct, individual voice, it works from the very first chapters. It seems to add to the chilling feel of the book as right from the start you are completely immersed inside the minds of two of the main characters, living the story with This is an absolutely stunning read. It is a psychological thriller told from three different points of view, that of Claudia, her nanny Zoe and Lorraine, a detective. Claudia and Zoe's stories are told in the first person, and because each character has a very distinct, individual voice, it works from the very first chapters. It seems to add to the chilling feel of the book as right from the start you are completely immersed inside the minds of two of the main characters, living the story with them. It is a book that simply drip feeds menace to the reader, with every single chapter seeming to seep out a little bit more so that by the end of the read you are completely wiped out. It is impossible to talk about the storyline itself without giving anything away, suffice to say that it is one where, as a woman, I could empathise, in different ways, with all three of the main characters. It is a very cleverly plotted book, one which will have you constantly trying to work things out in your head as you read on. The characters are very easy to connect and empathise with. When you have finished it, you will still be going over it in your mind the next day thinking "Could it have happened that way?" I found myself googling one particular thing just to check its feasibility and the answer was "yes". It was a book that had me gripped from the prologue and left me open mouthed at the end. I think it is one of the best books I have read in a long while and can't recommend it highly enough.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Blair

    When I read the awful Close My Eyes last month, I stated my desire to stop reading these chick-lit/crime thriller things. Yet here I am, a few weeks later, reading another one. It has practically the same cover as well ('woman with one eye' apparently being the new shorthand for sinister goings-on in the upper-middle-class suburbs), AND it's centred around a character who is desperate for a baby. In my defence, I'd had Until You're Mine waiting to be read for months, having obtained an advance c When I read the awful Close My Eyes last month, I stated my desire to stop reading these chick-lit/crime thriller things. Yet here I am, a few weeks later, reading another one. It has practically the same cover as well ('woman with one eye' apparently being the new shorthand for sinister goings-on in the upper-middle-class suburbs), AND it's centred around a character who is desperate for a baby. In my defence, I'd had Until You're Mine waiting to be read for months, having obtained an advance copy through NetGalley, and thought I ought to get it out of the way since it's now been released. However, rather than cementing the opinion I formed after the ordeal of Close My Eyes, the book restored my faith in the potential of this particular kind of story. There are three main characters in Until You're Mine. Claudia, heavily pregnant with her first child, is a social worker, wife to naval officer James and stepmother to young twin boys, Oscar and Noah. Zoe is the nanny Claudia hires to help with the twins and new baby. Lorraine is a CID officer investigating the murder of a pregnant woman. Right from the start, there's a suggestion that something's not right about Zoe, and using three different narratives (first person for Claudia and Zoe, third person for Lorraine) the author constantly drives the story in unexpected directions. The plot thickens when hidden connections between the characters - and the murdered woman - begin to emerge. But who can the reader trust? Which of these narrators isn't telling the truth - or are they all being dishonest? Until You're Mine is a thrilling ride of a book, tense and gripping with clues and cliffhangers on every other page. I found myself thinking about it when I was doing stuff like housework, attempting to figure out how all the pieces of the puzzle slotted together. It's fun trying to work out the connections, and while I guessed immediately that (view spoiler)[Cecilia was Zoe's sister (hide spoiler)] and had an idea about the identity of the murderer, I would never in a million years have guessed that (view spoiler)[Zoe was working undercover (hide spoiler)] !! Even after discovering this, while it does make sense, I still think there is no way I could have realised. There's also a couple of chapters in the latter half of the book in which the author does a fantastic job of writing about a whole series of events without actually revealing who she's writing about. And there's a real punch right at the very end... The last line is brilliant. I was originally going to give this book three stars... But, having thought about it, I really don't have anything bad to say about it. The biggest criticism I could come up with would be something like 'it's not exactly great literature', but who would expect it to be? Unlike many stories of this type, the plot isn't ridiculous - well, I suppose it probably is ridiculous, but ridiculous in a Gone Girl sort of way, exhilarating rather than unbelievable. The book is also pretty well-written - while the language is very straightforward, I didn't notice any flaws in it at all, and that's unusual for this genre. I'd recommend this to crime/thriller readers: I would definitely read more by the author, and next time I'm in the mood for something like this I will be looking out for her name.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Elyse Walters

    3.7 rating! I kept thinking about the movie "The Hand That Rocks The Cradle". Actress Rebecca De Mornay plays the 'nanny'. "Zoe Harper", nanny extraordinaire, in "Until You're Mine", and Rebecca De Mornay have a few character traits in common. ***Creepy qualities*** Its a family affair-(haha), with Zoe watching the young twin boys of James and Claudia. Claudia has another child due soon. Zoe is hired to help. James leaves home for work for long stretches. He's a Navy Officer. While the family dram 3.7 rating! I kept thinking about the movie "The Hand That Rocks The Cradle". Actress Rebecca De Mornay plays the 'nanny'. "Zoe Harper", nanny extraordinaire, in "Until You're Mine", and Rebecca De Mornay have a few character traits in common. ***Creepy qualities*** Its a family affair-(haha), with Zoe watching the young twin boys of James and Claudia. Claudia has another child due soon. Zoe is hired to help. James leaves home for work for long stretches. He's a Navy Officer. While the family drama is happening --an investigation is in full swing for a horrific murder. Lorraine and Adam -(a married couple with two daughters -with problems of their own) --are in charge of the investigation. While the reader is trying to figure out who the killer is... Keep in mind, THIS is a FUN-THRILLER-RIDE. Its FICTION!!! If you go into your 'head' and try to pick-it-apart as to what feels 'realistic' or 'not', you'll spoil your own enjoyment! I'm pretty good at guessing "WHO THE BAD GUY IS", I guessed correct in 'Gone Girl' during the first 10 pages, but not with this novel! Not even close!!! The twist is a great part of this story! WOW-WONDERFUL!! As in 'got-ya'! The 'ride' doesn't disappoint, at all!!! The ending is a RUSH! This is one of those books where LESS information is best! READ the Blurp, (it tells all you need to know).... Its page turning 'Addicting'! Leave your critical thinking about realism in the closet. Enjoy an escape-read! You'll be dying to know how it comes together! Thanks to the publisher, Netgalley, and Congrats to the author!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dem

    2.5 Stars I love a good Psychological thriller and Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes is one of those books that has you hooked from page one. I loved the plot of this novel." You have something that someone else wants at any cost............ Claudia seems to have the perfect life. She's heavily pregnant with a much wanted baby. She has a wonderful husband and a home that is the envy of many. But then Zoe comes into her home to help Caudia when the baby arrives and Claudia soon realises that Zo 2.5 Stars I love a good Psychological thriller and Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes is one of those books that has you hooked from page one. I loved the plot of this novel." You have something that someone else wants at any cost............ Claudia seems to have the perfect life. She's heavily pregnant with a much wanted baby. She has a wonderful husband and a home that is the envy of many. But then Zoe comes into her home to help Caudia when the baby arrives and Claudia soon realises that Zoe is not all she claims to be The first two thirds of this novel was dark and disturbing and the author kept me guessing where the story was going, the characters were interesting and I was intrigued with the story. However the last third of the novel really did not work for me at all and I felt was inconsistent with what went before, I don't want to go into detail but I was disappointed with the conclusion of the story.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Cora Tea Party Princess

    This was amazing! I thought I had this one all figured out and then the last few chapters blew my mind and theories serpentine to shreds. That endings marvellous. This was a very complex mystery/thriller/crime novel full of twists and turns and surprises. I was actually so surprised by the outcome that I had to reread the ending. From the very beginning I was hooked. The prologue is so powerful I was still thinking about it on the last page. Speaking of last pages, the epilogue had me trying to tur This was amazing! I thought I had this one all figured out and then the last few chapters blew my mind and theories serpentine to shreds. That endings marvellous. This was a very complex mystery/thriller/crime novel full of twists and turns and surprises. I was actually so surprised by the outcome that I had to reread the ending. From the very beginning I was hooked. The prologue is so powerful I was still thinking about it on the last page. Speaking of last pages, the epilogue had me trying to turn the page again and again even when I knew the story was finished - I just so badly wanted to read on.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Linda Strong

    This was a great psychological thriller by Samantha Hayes. She is a new author to me and I'm eager to read more of her books. Claudia is 8 1/2 months pregnant. She's married to James, who is in the Navy and step-mom to James' twin 4-year-old sons. She is working as a social worker and as her husband will be on a submarine somewhere when she delivers, she is looking for a nanny to help out. Lorraine is an officer of the law. Her newest case involves the murder of a pregnant woman and her baby. The This was a great psychological thriller by Samantha Hayes. She is a new author to me and I'm eager to read more of her books. Claudia is 8 1/2 months pregnant. She's married to James, who is in the Navy and step-mom to James' twin 4-year-old sons. She is working as a social worker and as her husband will be on a submarine somewhere when she delivers, she is looking for a nanny to help out. Lorraine is an officer of the law. Her newest case involves the murder of a pregnant woman and her baby. The woman was cut open, resembling a Cesarean Section. Having children of her own, and having problems with her husband, isn't helping with her efforts to concentrate on the case. Zoe applies for the position of nanny. Zoe has secrets, lots of secrets. The chapters alternate between the three woman. Extremely well written. Lots of roller coaster twists and turns. The final twist is a real eye-opener. Will leave you flabbergasted. You'll want to re-read it to see the clues you missed. Highly recommend this one to anyone who likes a psychological thrill and a humdinger of a mystery.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    WOW. What a stunner. Now THAT'S the way you do it. Samantha Hayes has written a masterful tale of questions, suspense, and puzzling characters. Nothing quite makes sense until EVERYTHING makes sense. This was extremely well-written and well-developed, impressively so. Every base is covered. No loose ends. And in the end, we had a perfect, completed jigsaw puzzle worthy of shellacking and hanging up on the study wall. AND possibly THE BEST last line of my entire reading life. BRAVO! WOW. What a stunner. Now THAT'S the way you do it. Samantha Hayes has written a masterful tale of questions, suspense, and puzzling characters. Nothing quite makes sense until EVERYTHING makes sense. This was extremely well-written and well-developed, impressively so. Every base is covered. No loose ends. And in the end, we had a perfect, completed jigsaw puzzle worthy of shellacking and hanging up on the study wall. AND possibly THE BEST last line of my entire reading life. BRAVO!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bren

    “Ridiculous, tiny things that, when added together, were bigger than life itself.” ― Samantha Hayes, Until You're Mine You know what I am discovering? I don't like "twist" as much as I thought I did. I find that to many thrillers these days have to have one twist..or more. I remember way back pre Gone Girl days, this was not an issue. It is in fact possible for a mystery or thriller to be great without a twist. So I did not take to this one. Part of it is me and my strong dislike of reading about b “Ridiculous, tiny things that, when added together, were bigger than life itself.” ― Samantha Hayes, Until You're Mine You know what I am discovering? I don't like "twist" as much as I thought I did. I find that to many thrillers these days have to have one twist..or more. I remember way back pre Gone Girl days, this was not an issue. It is in fact possible for a mystery or thriller to be great without a twist. So I did not take to this one. Part of it is me and my strong dislike of reading about bad things happening to pregnant women or women with babies. But this book had been so recommended to me. And in a way I see why because the writing was really intense and did keep me reading. SPOILERS: It did for awhile anyway. I got bored. Nothing more, nothing less. I knew a big twist was coming and I just did not care enough to deeply wonder what it was. I think if you read enough "Domestic Noir" you get burned out, especially when so many of them are alike. So when the twist came, I did not really care. And so many things were so improbable. I think it was good enough in that I did read until the end rather then DNF it but it left a bad taste with me and I cannot really say much more without revealing the whole plot which I wont do even with spoilers. If you like strong and atmospheric writing you might like that because the book has that but if you are tired of twists and predictable domestic suspense, it may not be for you.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    I’m joining in again with Throwback Thursday which was created by my good friend Renee at It’s Book Talk. She started this weekly feature as a way to highlight old favorites and read books that have already been published. I have so many older books on my TBR that get ignored in favor of review copies and I figure participating in Throwback Thursday will help me to read at a least one older title a week! Until You’re Mine has been recommended to me more times than I can count and I bought it fore I’m joining in again with Throwback Thursday which was created by my good friend Renee at It’s Book Talk. She started this weekly feature as a way to highlight old favorites and read books that have already been published. I have so many older books on my TBR that get ignored in favor of review copies and I figure participating in Throwback Thursday will help me to read at a least one older title a week! Until You’re Mine has been recommended to me more times than I can count and I bought it forever ago and am now kicking myself for not having read it the moment I received it! This was a cleverly plotted, unpredictable read that kept me entertained and totally captivated the whole time. This is told from three perspectives, Claudia, Zoe and Lorraine. This seems like a pretty straightforward story, but nothing is ever that simple, is it? Claudia is heavily pregnant and needs help when her husband has to leave as he’s in the Navy, so they hire Zoe as their live in nanny and it’s clear from the jump that she has many secrets. Lorraine is a police officer working on a case where pregnant woman are being attacked and murdered and her investigation causes her to cross paths with Claudia and Zoe. Pregnancy and babies are at the forefront of everything and I’m really glad I didn’t read this while I was pregnant, yikes!! I loved the mutual distrust between Zoe and Claudia, it added so much tension and was a bit like a good old fashioned game of cat and mouse. There is a sinister vibe, something dangerous lurking just around the corner that intrigued me to no end. The writing was slick and fluid and by the last half I was well and truly gripped. I don’t want to say too much more, but the ending of this was explosive, chilling and the last sentence? Creepily perfect!

  12. 4 out of 5

    debra

    Was 3.5-4. Good twisty escape read with an escalating sense of menace. There were a few character inconsistencies and maybe one too many unnecessary side plots thrown in- but they didn't really detract from enjoyment. . Last sentence made me smile and round up. Audio version had v good narrator- only caveat-story told from alternating POVs and you had to pay attention to know which character you were listening to. Not a serious problem, though. Read Melissa's, Kelly(and the book boar)'s, and Maur Was 3.5-4. Good twisty escape read with an escalating sense of menace. There were a few character inconsistencies and maybe one too many unnecessary side plots thrown in- but they didn't really detract from enjoyment. . Last sentence made me smile and round up. Audio version had v good narrator- only caveat-story told from alternating POVs and you had to pay attention to know which character you were listening to. Not a serious problem, though. Read Melissa's, Kelly(and the book boar)'s, and Maureen's reviews for a real review ; ))

  13. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    4.5 stars What a great read! Every time I pick up a suspense, I’m hoping for a story as smartly crafted and unpredictable as this one. There’s nothing better than thinking you know exactly where a story is headed, only to watch it all unravel into something else entirely. By the end, I was shocked, a little creeped-out and feeling like I had been completely duped. “Would you like me to tell you about the others?” The story is told through the eyes of three very different women - Claudia (a pre 4.5 stars What a great read! Every time I pick up a suspense, I’m hoping for a story as smartly crafted and unpredictable as this one. There’s nothing better than thinking you know exactly where a story is headed, only to watch it all unravel into something else entirely. By the end, I was shocked, a little creeped-out and feeling like I had been completely duped. “Would you like me to tell you about the others?” The story is told through the eyes of three very different women - Claudia (a pregnant woman), Zoe (Claudia’s new nanny) and Lorraine (a detective). There's been two attacks on pregnant women and Lorraine is tasked with investigating the heinous crimes. It’s during her investigation that she crosses paths with Claudia and Zoe. The author's writing was engaging and made it so easy for me to connect with her characters, even the crazy ones. With the alternating perspectives, Samantha Hayes establishes each character’s role in the story and sort of takes her readers by the hand and leads the way to a path that seems sort of obvious. It doesn’t feel predictable in any way, but you kind of have an idea of what's coming. Or do you? The ending completely changed everything! Incredibly clever and cunning, it made me go back and dissect every little thing along the way that made made me believe the ending was going to be obvious. I was totally caught off guard, which I loved.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    I have just finished reading UNTIL YOU'RE MINE by SAMANTHA HAYES link here on Amazon. I've not read any book by this author before, so she has been a really new author to me and one that I will be watching for and reading books she already has out. I don't like giving too much away about the story as it tends to spoils it for the reader, so I am going to say its a psychological thriller. I was hooked from beginning to end. The writing was free flowing, easy to connect with the characters and so i I have just finished reading UNTIL YOU'RE MINE by SAMANTHA HAYES link here on Amazon. I've not read any book by this author before, so she has been a really new author to me and one that I will be watching for and reading books she already has out. I don't like giving too much away about the story as it tends to spoils it for the reader, so I am going to say its a psychological thriller. I was hooked from beginning to end. The writing was free flowing, easy to connect with the characters and so intriguing throughout. I was so convinced I knew the ending, I know a lot of reviews say things like "It was a book I couldn't put down" this is true on this one and I don't use that loosely. Also what is used is "There were so many twists and turns" Yes there was! but not in the way that you feel. All the way through I was focused on one character being the main person who committed the 'deadly deed' was I right? You will have to read this to see!! If you love a good book that takes your into character, this is the one. I really, really loved this book. Samantha Hayes is certainly on my favourite author's lists I received this kindle edition from Samantha Hayes publishers for a honest review.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Jules

    Wow, what a great psychological thriller! I don't want to give too much away, so I just want to say that this was very well written, the plot was clever with some surprises, and the main female characters were strong and easy to relate to. This story felt very real. I found this very hard to put down, especially during the second half of the book. The last few chapters had my head in a spin. I really look forward to reading more by this author, and would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good r Wow, what a great psychological thriller! I don't want to give too much away, so I just want to say that this was very well written, the plot was clever with some surprises, and the main female characters were strong and easy to relate to. This story felt very real. I found this very hard to put down, especially during the second half of the book. The last few chapters had my head in a spin. I really look forward to reading more by this author, and would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good realistic psychological thriller. I think this would make quite an intense read for women with children of their own.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Brenda

    Claudia Morgan-Brown was eight and a half months pregnant – and ecstatic after many miscarriages and stillbirths in the past. Her husband James was a devoted father of four year old twin boys, Noah and Oscar; their mother had passed away from cancer while they were still babies, so when James and Claudia fell in love, everything seemed perfect. But James was also a submariner in the Navy where he spent months at a time at sea. So it seemed like a sensible idea for them to hire a nanny to help Cl Claudia Morgan-Brown was eight and a half months pregnant – and ecstatic after many miscarriages and stillbirths in the past. Her husband James was a devoted father of four year old twin boys, Noah and Oscar; their mother had passed away from cancer while they were still babies, so when James and Claudia fell in love, everything seemed perfect. But James was also a submariner in the Navy where he spent months at a time at sea. So it seemed like a sensible idea for them to hire a nanny to help Claudia with the boys, and their new baby girl when she arrived. Claudia was still working at her full time position of social worker at Children’s Services and planned to work right up until her due date. When Zoe Harper arrived at the Morgan-Brown home after being successful with her interview, she couldn’t believe her luck. She knew she would make this job work; it was vital to her plans. Zoe seemed to fit in well – the boys loved her, even the mischievous Noah – and she was a hard worker, making things just so much easier for Claudia. But Claudia was unsure about Zoe – she couldn’t put her finger on what it was, but there was just something about her that she didn’t trust… With James having gone back to sea and Claudia at work, it was Zoe who took the boys to school each morning, picking them up in the afternoon as well. But what did she do during the hours the boys were at school? Was Claudia just hormonal – paranoid because of her pregnancy? This psychological thriller absolutely blew me away with the unbelievable twist at the end! I actually had to go back and re-read a couple of pages to see that I hadn’t made a mistake in my assumptions. I found the middle part of the book a little drawn out and tedious, but then the suspense built and I could not put it down. I have no hesitation in recommending Until You’re Mine.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lee

    I have previously read a book by Samantha Hayes and I really enjoyed it, I enjoyed this one but not quite as much. I won't go into the plot as it would be easy to give spoliers away but this is a psychological thriller which is creepy, suspenceful and keeps you thinking. I was quite captivated with the majority of the book but I was disappointed in the end. I have previously read a book by Samantha Hayes and I really enjoyed it, I enjoyed this one but not quite as much. I won't go into the plot as it would be easy to give spoliers away but this is a psychological thriller which is creepy, suspenceful and keeps you thinking. I was quite captivated with the majority of the book but I was disappointed in the end.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ruth Turner

    Once started I couldn't put it down. I read it in one day. I found the story line a little unbelievable at times, but otherwise a great read. 3 stars plus 1 for the last line. Once started I couldn't put it down. I read it in one day. I found the story line a little unbelievable at times, but otherwise a great read. 3 stars plus 1 for the last line.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Stefanie

    Rating 4.0 Stars This was a great psychological thriller by new author Samantha Hayes. This book was really easy to read. There are three main characters each of which get a chapter of their own and then it switches back to the first and so on. I enjoyed this style of writing as I got to read about the same or similar scenes from more than one perspective. The Plot Claudia Morgan-Brown is pregnant, very pregnant and she needs a nanny to help with her 4 year old twin step-sons and soon to arrive ne Rating 4.0 Stars This was a great psychological thriller by new author Samantha Hayes. This book was really easy to read. There are three main characters each of which get a chapter of their own and then it switches back to the first and so on. I enjoyed this style of writing as I got to read about the same or similar scenes from more than one perspective. The Plot Claudia Morgan-Brown is pregnant, very pregnant and she needs a nanny to help with her 4 year old twin step-sons and soon to arrive new baby girl. In comes Zoe, a nanny from heaven it would seem, but the girl has secrets. The third main character who it appears will star in future novels in DI Lorraine Fisher. DI Fisher comes on the scene when there is a violent attack on a young pregnant girl leaving her and her baby both deceased. DI Fisher is having a slew of problems in her personal life and now that I noticed that she will be the star of the series I understand why such time was taken describing her life and character. Who is harming these poor pregnant girls? Is Claudia or her baby in danger? What does Zoe really want with the Morgan-Brown Clan? This book unveils secrets upon secrets and I had a really fun time trying to figure it out. Admittedly I guessed it right but that wasn't until I read more than 75% of the book and it didn't detract at all from the reveal because I had lingering doubts the whole time. The way the three characters stories and secrets weave together at the end is stunning. I will definitely be reading the next novel in this series and believe that Miss Hayes will only improve from here. Great novel, highly recommended for readers of psychological suspense.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mish

    This book is a seriously disturbing novel that probes into the mind of a mentally unstable woman and her longing to have a child of her own. In this book, we follow two Detective’s, a husband and wife team, who are trying to solve a series of brutal attacks and murder on specific women that have had a history of drug and alcohol abuse, whom are vulnerable and alone, and heavily pregnant. Whilst also struggling to hold their marriage together due to infidelity issues, a rebellious teenage daughte This book is a seriously disturbing novel that probes into the mind of a mentally unstable woman and her longing to have a child of her own. In this book, we follow two Detective’s, a husband and wife team, who are trying to solve a series of brutal attacks and murder on specific women that have had a history of drug and alcohol abuse, whom are vulnerable and alone, and heavily pregnant. Whilst also struggling to hold their marriage together due to infidelity issues, a rebellious teenage daughter and a demanding work load. Running along side the investigation we look at the lives of a group of women. Each has their own reasons for wanting children. But do they want it badly enough to commit murder? The book heavily focuses on parenthood and expected mothers, and while this topic may not appeal to a wide audience, the mystery is good. It is a twisting, cunning plot that had me deceived and questioning my judgment. My attention would shift from one person to the other throughout the novel, not knowing whom to believe and it’s only until the end when the killer is about to strike that everything comes together. It’s a vicious thriller with some graphic murder scenes on pregnant woman that made me feel slightly uncomfortable. However the finale was unpredictable and shocking - the way I like it. Thanks to Crown Publishing and Netgalley for my review copy

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    When I read the synopsis of Until You're Mine, I was immediately curious. Although not a mother myself, it struck me that a story about a pregnant woman with creepy nanny could be one of those edge-of-my-seat kind of books because the stakes are so very high. Until You're Mine is told through three perspectives - Claudia who is finally pregnant with her first child after years of trying and heartbreak, Zoe the nanny who seems too good to be true and Lorraine, the police office investigating a ra When I read the synopsis of Until You're Mine, I was immediately curious. Although not a mother myself, it struck me that a story about a pregnant woman with creepy nanny could be one of those edge-of-my-seat kind of books because the stakes are so very high. Until You're Mine is told through three perspectives - Claudia who is finally pregnant with her first child after years of trying and heartbreak, Zoe the nanny who seems too good to be true and Lorraine, the police office investigating a rash of deaths amongst pregnant women in the local area. Lorraine's perspective was a real surprise, for although she is the investigating officer, she is also having problems in her marriage to Adam, who is also a cop working the same cases as Lorraine. Unfortunately, Lorraine's perspective, although interesting, actually distracted me from the storyline of Zoe and Claudia and I didn't really see why it was relevant to the story. It almost felt like it was thrown in as a filler to make the story longer (and at 400 pages it's not exactly a quick read) and it also made it difficult for me to connect with Lorraine because I just wasn't invested in her story. As for the plot between Claudia and Zoe, that was certainly more what I was looking for - there was definitely an element of mystery and as the story progressed it became more and more captivating as more about Claudia and Zoe's pasts were revealed and the story climaxed in a way I wasn't really expecting. I didn't see the clues that led up to the ending, although looking back they were there but just cleverly concealed. Until You're Mine is a good, if slightly predictable in places, thriller, with a lot of mystery and some very clever characterisation. However, I found the extra perspective irritating rather than adding any value and the ending was a little bit too quick, without the kind of resolution I really needed.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Leanne

    I'm a little grumpy writing this review, because although this was a fun, twisty, fast-paced book, I stayed up much too late finishing it. And it wasn't quite good enough to warrant me falling asleep at work and requiring multiple teas (because unfortunately, the appeal of coffee escapes me). I'm giving Until You're Mine 3 stars because although I don't have many complaints, my inner book snob (sorry!) can't justify 4+ for this type of book. It is exactly the prose you'd expect from a slightly s I'm a little grumpy writing this review, because although this was a fun, twisty, fast-paced book, I stayed up much too late finishing it. And it wasn't quite good enough to warrant me falling asleep at work and requiring multiple teas (because unfortunately, the appeal of coffee escapes me). I'm giving Until You're Mine 3 stars because although I don't have many complaints, my inner book snob (sorry!) can't justify 4+ for this type of book. It is exactly the prose you'd expect from a slightly silly and unrealistic popcorn thriller. But the plot! And, especially, the ending! They made my skin crawl a little, and kept me turning and turning the pages (well, clicking and clicking the next page button). And really threw me for a loop - I guessed only the most obvious of the many twists the author managed to work in. So, overall, a success - perfect escapist reading, for those who need a break in between thought-provoking, challenging reads, or a beach/vacation book (get it quick, since beach days are numbered!)

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kandice

    4.5 stars OMG!! My 2.5 yr old son fell out of bed around 2:30am this morning. I couldn't go back to sleep right, so I decided to listen to this audiobook for a bit. It's now 5:30am and I'm finished AND WIDE AWAKE!! What a story!!!! Thank you Lisa E for recommending it. I just hope I can sneak in a nap later today!! Review: My heart aches for couples that struggle to conceive. I can only imagine the pain they feel when they are disappointed month after month. The emotional and financial strains infe 4.5 stars OMG!! My 2.5 yr old son fell out of bed around 2:30am this morning. I couldn't go back to sleep right, so I decided to listen to this audiobook for a bit. It's now 5:30am and I'm finished AND WIDE AWAKE!! What a story!!!! Thank you Lisa E for recommending it. I just hope I can sneak in a nap later today!! Review: My heart aches for couples that struggle to conceive. I can only imagine the pain they feel when they are disappointed month after month. The emotional and financial strains infertility places on a family are often devastating. How far would you go to have a baby? In this story, one woman is so consumed by having a child that she will do the unthinkable. This story is gripping. I don't want to say anything else, except READ IT!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes is a 2014 Broadway Books publication. I was provided a copy of this by the publisher and Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. I am a huge fan of psychological thrillers because of the unusual twist and turns and and how tense the atmosphere is. This one had me on edge even more than usual due to the emotional subject matter. Someone is trying to steal babies...before they are actually born- removing them from the womb of the mother, often takin Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes is a 2014 Broadway Books publication. I was provided a copy of this by the publisher and Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. I am a huge fan of psychological thrillers because of the unusual twist and turns and and how tense the atmosphere is. This one had me on edge even more than usual due to the emotional subject matter. Someone is trying to steal babies...before they are actually born- removing them from the womb of the mother, often taking the life of both. So, when the reader meets a young woman with twin step-sons and a baby girl on the way, who is advertising for a nanny.. well, you see where this is going. For some reason I was just as drawn in by the secondary story involving the investigators on the case- a married couple- Lorraine and Adam. While at work the two never let on they are married, but the reader knows that something is not right in the relationship. It's not rocket science, but the rift between them has repercussions when their teenage daughter begins to act out. It is very difficult to write reviews on a book that is so loaded with spoiler landmines. No one situation, no one relationship, is as it originally appeared to be. I will confess that as reader of many thrillers I had begun to piece a few things together but some of the inner thoughts of the characters kept me guessing and doubting my conclusions. The author did a great job of planting well placed red herrings and leading us to conclude one thing while something altogether different was going on. Even if you do think you have some things figured out, there are some big reveals you will probably never see coming. The plot is very carefully and cleverly woven and for the most part it works. A few too many characters which combined with some truly puzzling conversations at times got a little too complicated making it hard for me to remain focused. I had to go back and re-read passages to be sure I had the characters names and positions correct. In the end the conclusion is as chilling as I thought it would be. It appears this book is the first novel in a planned series featuring Lorraine. I enjoyed this one enough to give the second book a try. Overall 4 stars

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    4.5 Stars I can't say much about this book as I wouldn't want to spoil it for anyone BUT if you love a get-your-teeth-stuck-in, gripping, hand-that-rocks-the-cradle-esque, fucked up psychological thriller then you will love this. I had a small problem with it (and when I find out how to add a spoiler so you can't see it unless you click on it I'll tell you what it is lol!) but it didn't ruin the experience - I really enjoyed this one. 4.5 Stars I can't say much about this book as I wouldn't want to spoil it for anyone BUT if you love a get-your-teeth-stuck-in, gripping, hand-that-rocks-the-cradle-esque, fucked up psychological thriller then you will love this. I had a small problem with it (and when I find out how to add a spoiler so you can't see it unless you click on it I'll tell you what it is lol!) but it didn't ruin the experience - I really enjoyed this one.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Lectus

    This book is incredibly boring. The twist that everybody talks about... I don't see it as a twist but as something that just came out of nowhere to change an otherwise simple and predictable plot. Overall, the story was going plausible until the "twist" which then made everything else have no sense. The blurb: I personally thought that the entire story was given way in the plot, but I kept reading because I already had checked the book out of the library. I skipped half of the book to the "twist" This book is incredibly boring. The twist that everybody talks about... I don't see it as a twist but as something that just came out of nowhere to change an otherwise simple and predictable plot. Overall, the story was going plausible until the "twist" which then made everything else have no sense. The blurb: I personally thought that the entire story was given way in the plot, but I kept reading because I already had checked the book out of the library. I skipped half of the book to the "twist" and then went back to read the whole thing because it made no sense. The POVs: The chapters start with no indication of who is talking so I got confused until somewhere I finally got who's pov was that. Mind you, not all chapters were like that, but most of them. This is in an attempt to confuse you when the "twist" comes into play. The length: The book is unnecessary long. We have the story of Lorraine (the detective working the case) that is totally irrelevant to the main story. I just skipped all that. But wait, Lorraine's husband cheated on her once (hence all their problems?) and at the end, it turned out that her husband knew the nanny. "Do you know her?" Lorraine asked. "Yes, I do," the husband said. And that is that. I suppose that she's the one he cheated on her wife with? ***** Spoilers ***** Do not read this if you don't want to know who the real killer is. Anyways, throughout the book, everything is played for you to think that the nanny is the killer. In the first chapter (or maybe it was the prologue?) we have somebody talking about how all she wants in life is a baby. Since she was a little kid this narrator has been obsessed with having a baby. This narrator is not the nanny, though. Well, I guess that that narration has nothing to do with the real main characters and it was there just to throw you off. In the story, the nanny is completely obsessed with having a baby. But it turns out that in reality, the nanny is an undercover agent investigating Claudia (the mom-to-be' s husband) for money laundering or something like that. Let me tell you that this completely came out of nowhere. There was never a hint about the husband's play in the plot other than to be there. We constantly get suspicious activities from the nanny which leads you to believe that she is plotting to take the mother's baby. But in reality, the mother was never pregnant and was the one killing pregnant women to have their babies because she was obsessed with one. I don't think the mother (Claudia) was the narrator at the beginning either because she was taking care of her tweens stepsons which would had been enough to satiate her odd motherly yearning. It turned out that the nanny never wanted a baby. All she wanted was to have a career. So, why the obsessive thoughts about having a baby then? Just to mislead you. The main stupidity of this book was when Pip, another pregnant woman about to give birth, calls Claudia (who turned out to be the real killer) when she (Pip) went into labor. I am not a doctor, but it seems to me that labor comes suddenly just on tv and, I guess now, in books. Doesn't labor pain usually builds up to birth. But this is minor, the main point is that if you go into sudden labor, you CALL AN AMBULANCE not a friend. What exactly is your friend going to do? So Pip called Claudia, and Claudia goes there and gets a kitchen knife to take Pip's baby. Stupidly convenient. Now, mind you, Claudia has tried this stunt before and killed all babies and mothers. Don't you know by now that you just don't cut open a woman's belly to take a baby out? Didn't you watch some Youtube videos about childbirth to prepare yourself? Apparently not. So at the end, Ms. Nanny is not the killer but an undercover agent investigating the family she works for and the real killer is the mother who hired the nanny in the first place. Interesting plot, I would say, but badly developed. There was never the slightest indication that Claudia was a psychopath; it just came out of nowhere which left me empty. For me, it was like writing a book and a plot and changing everything at the end just to shock the reader.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Cleopatra Pullen

    Warning this is not a good book to read while you are pregnant! If you are pregnant buy it for when you are cradling your baby in your arms during those sleepless nights ahead. This is a book starts with the description of a young girl sprinkling her tiny-tears doll with ‘magic dust’ to bring her to life, when the girl has no live baby in her arms by the time she is twelve, she throws her doll onto the fire in disgust. This book is dominated by mothers; mothers-to-be and women who long-to-be-moth Warning this is not a good book to read while you are pregnant! If you are pregnant buy it for when you are cradling your baby in your arms during those sleepless nights ahead. This is a book starts with the description of a young girl sprinkling her tiny-tears doll with ‘magic dust’ to bring her to life, when the girl has no live baby in her arms by the time she is twelve, she throws her doll onto the fire in disgust. This book is dominated by mothers; mothers-to-be and women who long-to-be-mothers, step-mothers and mothers of teenagers. Underlying each page is the feeling that there are untold truths and half-told lies. The quest for the truth left me with a sense of unease, a longing to know what was going on while fearing what the next page would reveal. In short a great psychological thriller that made my heart race, gasp out loud shortly followed by a sharp intake of breath. Samantha Hayes has an eye for detail in her descriptions particularly Claudia’s home with the worn stair carpet and locked study door. Zoe’s interactions with Claudia and her best friend Pip have an authentic feel, with the truths and lies exchanged with reddening faces and quivering limbs. This is a fast moving story which had me in it’s grip from the first page to the very last revelation. For more please check out http://cleopatralovesbooks.wordpress.... I received this book from the publisher in return for an honest review

  28. 5 out of 5

    Meera

    Terrible! It's supposed to be a thriller, but all the characters and the storyline are so preposterous that I couldn't believe in it at all. I guessed the so-called twist halfway through, and it was really unconvincing. Terrible! It's supposed to be a thriller, but all the characters and the storyline are so preposterous that I couldn't believe in it at all. I guessed the so-called twist halfway through, and it was really unconvincing.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Myrna

    I see the Goodreads community is divided on their ratings/feelings of this book. Most don't like it or really like it. I'm one of those that really liked it. It was a twisted thriller with a super creepy epilogue! Look forward to Samantha's next book. I see the Goodreads community is divided on their ratings/feelings of this book. Most don't like it or really like it. I'm one of those that really liked it. It was a twisted thriller with a super creepy epilogue! Look forward to Samantha's next book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    kari

    I was going to give this one four stars, even close to five, but then I slept on it and realized that there are a few problems. While the writing was well done, with interesting characters and the prerequisite red herrings tossed in, I did have problems with some of it. (view spoiler)[I think the reason for Zoe being the nanny, being an undercover investigator, simply doesn't hold water. Here's why I think that. She is in their home on false pretenses, steals a key to a locked door, rummages in t I was going to give this one four stars, even close to five, but then I slept on it and realized that there are a few problems. While the writing was well done, with interesting characters and the prerequisite red herrings tossed in, I did have problems with some of it. (view spoiler)[I think the reason for Zoe being the nanny, being an undercover investigator, simply doesn't hold water. Here's why I think that. She is in their home on false pretenses, steals a key to a locked door, rummages in the study, searches for a key to locked file cabinets and then searched through them. I can't see how this would actually work. I don't know about British law and I'm sure there are differences, but I would think this case would be thrown out because of illegal search, without a warrant, etc. And if the evidence is tossed, then so would the case be tossed. Yes, Zoe says her actions are only a small part, but still, this is illegal on the part of the police department and I don't think it would hold up. It's therefore nonsensical if you pause to think about it. And if you then take away the supposed reason for Zoe's presence in their lives, well, the whole thing actually won't hold up. I think this is a big plot hole. I do have a problem with a police investigation in which the police never figure it out. It could have worked if they had been on their way to make an arrest when the final crime occurs, or that they even had some suspicion. But, nope. I'm not sure why so much of their personal life was included. It was somewhat interesting, but pulled the focus away from the central story. All of the stuff with Cecelia and Zoe/Heather was just, well, insignificant, really. It was, of course, a huge red herring, but the conclusion is just so blah. Cecelia must have a baby, must, must, must have a baby. It's all she can think about, rages about, focuses on that her sister will do this for her. And then, at the end, she just says well, I'm sad about that. What the what? She is all but crazed over needing a baby and then, oh well, you're right, I'll just give up on that. Huh? (hide spoiler)] Now, having stated the issues I have with the story, overall, I still did like it. There is a great feeling of foreboding and you'll think you know what's happening until the moment it is turned on its head, something which I really love in a good mystery. I love it when I simply don't see the twist coming, but if you then go back and look it over, you can see where at least one of the narrators is extremely unreliable. There is a big info-dump right at the end which I really didn't care for. Yes, it is info and explanations, but I'd have liked the part of Zoe's narration, to have been somehow integrated into the story. An ending info-dump just isn't okay. The police questioning session, ooh, creepy and that was great. So, although I can't say I loved it start to finish, there is enough good stuff here that I would at the very least, give this author another try. The last sentence of this book is a kicker!

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