An addictive, fast-paced thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Perfect for fans of LISA GARDNER and CLARE MACKINTOSH.
‘A novel like razor-wire…part chase thriller, part psychological suspense’ AJ Finn, author of #1 bestseller The Woman in the Window
Two strangers, Cait and Rebecca, are driving across America. Cait’s job is to transport women to safety. Out of respect, she never asks any questions. Like most of the women, Rebecca is trying to escape something.
But what if Rebecca’s secrets put them both in danger? There’s a reason Cait chooses to keep on the road, helping strangers. She has a past of her own, and knows what it’s like to be followed.
And there is someone right behind them, watching their every move...
Don’t Turn Around was good, in fact it was very good. It was tense, urgent and at times made me feel quite cross and angry, a sure sign that the author had tapped into my emotions, and really made me think about what I was reading.
At the novels heart were two brilliant but flawed women, Cait and Rebecca, both at opposite ends of the economic and social spectrum. Cait, young, a struggling writer, who worked in a bar to make ends meet. Rebecca, beautiful, poised, married to an upcoming politician, with an ice maiden exterior, but something something deeper and vulnerable hidden within.
The reason for their meeting and subsequent road trip was at first subject to conjecture, reasons that swirled around until Barry slowly peeled away the layers and revealed a reason that you couldn’t quite believe.
Barry used the voices of Cait and Rebecca and the characters they encountered to tell the story, enabled us to see the version of events, the reasons from all angles, that gave a balanced viewpoint on the themes raised.
Indeed the themes raised were deep, current and relevant. For Rebecca she had to question, decide how far she was prepared to sacrifice her own happiness and principles and, to some extent her own identity for the love of a man, for the furtherment of his career. Would she allow those around her husband dictate and take away her right to what happened within her own body, make her suffer unimaginable torment and anguish for political gain. As her husband and those around them plotted, strategised I found myself getting angrier and angrier, how dare they assume, belittle, threaten.
For Cait, an article written after a sexual encounter, provoked outrage, but not as you would have thought, as she found herself vilified online and indeed in public. Again Barry provoked thought, the interpretation of sexual experiences from a male perspective wildly different from those of a woman. Who was right, was the old stereotype still in play, a woman’s sexual encounters frowned upon, a man’s seen just as a bit of fun?
As their road trip continued as the danger to themselves increased, you watched as the two wildly different women, found common ground, camaraderie, and renewed strength to believe in themselves, to take control and stand up for what they wanted.
For all its myriad themes, Barry didn’t forget that we were actually reading a crime/psychological thriller. I loved the darkness of their road trip, the glaring headlights in their rear window, the sense of fear, of being watched, of not knowing which one of them was the target. Their resourcefulness was admirable, as they gained strength and confidence from each other, the final encounter surprising, hugely dramatic and tense.
The ending was………. Definitely not for me to say as this is a book I want you to read. A novel where the author balanced her thought provoking and current themes with that of a crime psychological thriller brilliantly.
I would like to thank Harvil Secker for a copy of Don’t Turn Around to read and review and to Jasmine Marsh for inviting My Bookish Blogspot to participate in the blogtour.
About the author
Jessica Barry is a pseudonym for an American author who has lived and worked in London for the past fifteen years. Look for Me, previously published as Freefall, her debut thriller, has sold in more than twenty-two territories around the world and has also secured a major Hollywood film deal.