Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: July 18th, 2017
Synopsis: Cass is having a hard time since the night she saw the car in the woods, on the winding rural road, in the middle of a downpour, with the woman sitting inside–the woman who was killed. She’s been trying to put the crime out of her mind; what could she have done, really? It’s a dangerous road to be on in the middle of a storm. Her husband would be furious if he knew she’d broken her promise not to take that shortcut home. And she probably would only have been hurt herself if she’d stopped.
But since then, every little thing: where she left the car, if she took her pills, the alarm code, why she ordered a pram when she doesn’t have a baby.
The only thing she can’t forget is that woman, the woman she might have saved, and the terrible nagging guilt.
Or, the silent calls she’s receiving, or the feeling that someone’s watching her…
B. A. Paris has already gained a worldwide following with last year’s Behind Closed Doors. I still haven’t gotten around to reading that, but I read so many rave reviews about it, that when Breakdown appeared on NetGalley I didn’t think twice about requesting it. While I didn’t dislike it, there was something missing for me.
I liked the main character, Cass, very much. She’s a woman who is tormented by a split second decision that she made, one that many of us would have the same problem with. Adding to that, is her worrying over her memory lapses and the possibility that she may be developing early-onset dementia as her mother did. For the first half of the book, While I completely emphasized with what she was going through, I grew impatient at times with her naïveté and gullibility. There are so many repetitive scenes showing Cass feeling guilty, or afraid that she’s going to be the murderer’s next victim, at one point I thought “Oh get on with it already!” And of course felt guilty myself immediately after.
The other main issue was that the entire storyline seemed to rest solely on the mystery of who the murderer was, and was he/she really stalking Cass, or was this all in her head. I think it was about three or four chapters in that I already figured out what was really going on. The list of rather bland, two-dimensional suspects was quite short, so it was not only fairly easy to guess who the villain was, but also what their motivations were. As I plodded through the pages, I kept hoping that there was going to be some shocking twist at the end which would prove me wrong, but except for a couple of small surprises, this didn’t happen.
The ending I felt was too abrupt, although in the last few chapters I did appreciate Cass changing from a self-doubting damsel in distress, to revenge/justice seeking, force to be reckoned with.
In the end, I confess, that after all the hype I was a little disappointed with The Breakdown. However, with its sympathetic heroine and the realistic plot that had me thinking a few times “Hmm. What would I do in that situation?” I would try another book by this author. And once again, I’m in the minority in regards to my opinion. The vast majority of reviews I’ve read on Goodreads have been positive. My blogging buddy Carrie at https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress.com absolutely loved this and has written a wonderful review if you’d like to check it out.