Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
When I received a copy of 'Bring Me Back' by B.A. Paris in the mail from St. Martin’s Press, I was absolutely delighted. As a big fan of Paris’ writing, I had already been prepared to purchase this one upon its release date on June 19.
It was a pleasant surprise to be able to read the book a few weeks early and as the rest of her books have, it lived up to my expectations. It has been awhile since I read a thriller and this was the perfect one to garner my attention back into the genre.
Let’s start with the story. As always, I will do my best to remain spoiler-free.
The book begins by unfolding the story of a couple named Finn & Layla who are on vacation in France. While stopped at a gas station, Finn makes a trip to the restroom and returns to find Layla nowhere to be found.
Finn reports the incident to the police….. but does he tell them the whole truth? That’s just the first question to pop up on the endless list you create while trying to figure out just what happened to Layla.
Twelve years go by and Finn has convinced himself he's moved on while still left to wonder whatever happened to the love of his life. Plot twist: He is now living with and engaged to Layla’s sister, Ellen. I know what you’re thinking….. creepy and wrong, right? But their shared grief over the loss of Layla is what brought them together today.
Following the announcement of their engagement in the newspaper, Finn receives a phone call that an old neighbor claims to have spotted Layla outside of the cottage where they lived together a decade ago. The cottage that Finn has left exactly as it was then. The cottage Finn has still never sold.....
After brushing it off as a mere coincidence, Finn tries to forget about it but begins receiving mysterious emails from a person who knows way more than they should about things that they shouldn’t. As Finn starts to lose his mind trying to figure out who could be taunting him, he beings to suspect that maybe Layla truly is back – and if she is, she doesn’t seem to be planning on going away again.
From there on, the book is a full-on cat and mouse chase between Finn and Layla, who in addition to the emails, continues to reach out through leaving little Russian dolls - a symbol from her past (with Ellen).
As Finn works hard to shield and protect Ellen from discovering the truth, he falls deeper into each trap Layla sets for him., discovering he never lost the intense feelings he had for her.
The ending of this book is hard to describe without giving anything away so let me just summarize it with this: WOW
It was the definition of a true “I did not see that coming” moment. I literally laughed out loud at first glance because I was in utter shock. And that, my friends, is my favorite component of a great thriller.
There’s nothing more disappointing than being able to guess where the story is going to end up before you get there. And “Bring me Back” definitely did not have that problem.
While I really enjoyed the plot and the complexity/creepiness of the characters, I found myself having a hard time liking or feeling sorry for Finn. Even though he technically what I guess you would consider the “victim” of the story, he just did not seem like that nice of a person. Throughout the entire book, I just found him to be kind of sketchy and unpredictable. But despite that, each of the characters kept me guessing on how the story was going to end. And each time, my guess was wrong.
Paris is one of my favorite writers in this genre. She just has a way of creating a story and characters that are so compelling and messed up that you can’t help but keep reading to what is going to happen next.
If you are a fan of thrillers and are looking for your next edge-of-your-seat adventure ride, I would definitely recommend 'Bring Me Back.' One thing’s for sure. Don’t start this book if you have an early morning, once you start, you won’t want to stop until it’s done.
June 19th guys…… get your copy of “Bring me Back!” It can be purchased on amazon at:
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