Twenty years ago, Dennis Danson was arrested and imprisoned for the brutal murder of a young girl in Florida’s Red River County.
Now he’s the subject of a true-crime documentary that’s whipping up a frenzy online to uncover the truth and free a man who has been wrongly convicted.
A thousand miles away in England, Samantha is obsessed with Dennis’s case. She exchanges letters with him, and is quickly won over by his apparent charm and kindness to her.
Soon she has left her old life behind to marry him and campaign for his release.
But when the campaign is successful and Dennis is freed, Sam begins to discover new details that suggest he may not be quite so innocent after all.
But how do you confront your husband when you don’t want to know the truth?
This novel could have been so good, had it not been for the excessive waffle and annoying characters. I enjoyed a lot of this story but in the end, the conclusion really let this novel down.
Ever since Making a Murderer came out, I’ve seen hundreds of non fiction books and new documentaries tackling the subject of the wrongfully convicted. However, I hadn’t seen many fiction books taking on the topic which is what lured me into reading this one. I think the plot for this one was quite unique for what’s on the market today but it wasn’t as well executed as it could have been… still good but let down by a mediocre ending.
I thoroughly enjoyed a lot of this book but it was drawn out. It felt as though Lloyd was trying to reach a word goal rather than actually add substance to the plot. A lot of what happens is a repeated. Each time there are slight changes to what happens, but it can’t distract from the fact that you are reading basically the same thing as before.
This book just whooshed past me! The time in the book goes super quickly. Even big events in this book, like Dennis’ release from prison, passes in a couple of pages. I thought this was a bit strange, honestly, to not have any time for a big part of the novel to sink in before you’re whisked off to a new situation. I didn’t like the fact that the book took away from the significance of the important events in this way.
In terms of characters, Sam was pretty annoying. She was really hysterical and whingy. It got to the point that when something actually happened to warrant a hysterical moment or a whinge, I didn’t really care. I thought the rest of the book was really well written, but I felt a disconnect with Sam. She could go from two extremes in the matter of seconds and so that made her really feel like a character, not someone I could imagine being a real person.
Dennis on the other-hand was very real feeling. He could be such a nasty piece of work and then turn into the sweetest gentlemen ever. He was exactly the kind of man every girl is told to avoid, a man who can pick you up and then make you feel like dirt a second later. And even as a reader I was sucked into this pattern of thinking he was an OK guy, troubled because of his 20 year incarceration, and then thinking he was a dirtbag for how he could behave.
Although I enjoyed various things in this book and even though I found it a little drawn out and repetitive I would have still given this a 4 star review because I had liked getting to know the characters, even the annoying ones, and I liked the plot line. Unfortunately a predictable and strange conclusion to the mystery really made for a disappointing ending, one that knocked a whole star from my rating!
Lloyd is good at writing and building characters but her storyline lacked excitement and shock. If you don’t read this one, you’re not missing out on much.
Thanks to Netgalley and Random House, Cornerstone for giving me the opportunity to read this in exchange for an honest review!