Cass is leaving her end-of-term faculty party during a huge storm and decides to take the Blackwater Lane shortcut that she promised her husband she would not take as it is a lonely and dangerous road, much more so in a storm at night. When she sees a woman stopped on the side of the road, she pulls over, but she is terrified because of the storm raging on and the isolation of the road. When the other woman doesn’t signal to her for help, Cass leaves after a few minutes.
The next morning she is horrified to learn the news of the woman’s brutal murder. She feels so much guilt over not stopping, but she cannot tell her husband Matthew because she promised not to go that way. When she realizes that she knew the murdered woman, she is racked with guilt that is accompanied by tremendous anxiety. When her best friend Rachel calls she decides she will tell her over lunch. However, she is so overwrought because she forgot that she was supposed to be buying a group gift for another friend and has no idea what the gift was supposed to be, that she decides not to tell Rachel after all.
As she begins to forget more and more things she becomes fearful that she is experiencing Early Onset Dementia like her mother, who was diagnosed at age 44. As her anxiety grows, so does her fear and then she starts receiving phone calls with no one speaking on the other end. Terror floods her mind as she believes that the killer must have seen her that night in the woods and is now out to get her.
The fear, anxiety, and forgetfulness begins to worry Matthew and he insists she go to a doctor. The doctor gives her medicine for anxiety, and, although the pills help, they keep her knocked out most of the time and she can barely function. However, not taking them leads to a breakdown. Will she ever find out who is calling her? And is she really going crazy? Or is someone out to harm her or make her harm herself?
Having read and loved B.A. Paris‘ Behind Closed Doors (click the link for that review) I was very excited when this book came out. When it finally made it to the top of my TBR pile, I was eager to get into it. My excitement abated a bit when I did not immediately click with Cass. I liked her, but she just wasn’t a friendly person to me. I listened on, believing that I would come to like her more, and I did a little and I felt somewhat sorry for her. The story is really good, even though I didn’t love Cass and didn’t really like her husband Matthew, either. I did like her friend Rachel, however.
I wanted Cass to own up to someone about why she felt so guilty about the murdered woman, just wanted her to tell someone what she saw on the road and why she was afraid the murderer would target her. The story was really good and the twist at the end did shock me a little because I thought I had it figured out, but I had somewhat missed the mark. I really like how it ended and I came to really like Cass when she finally took control of her own destiny and stopped wallowing in self-doubt and self-pity.
B.A. Paris has another book, Bring Me Back, coming in June of 2018 and it is one that I will look forward to reading as I truly enjoy her writing style and her twists that keep you a little off-balance. I also hope that Georgia Maguire is the narrator for the next one as she beautifully narrated both Behind Closed Doors and The Breakdown. Her voice is very appealing and she gives the characters an air of dignity that I really like.
As recommendations go, if you haven’t read anything by B.A. Paris, I suggest you start with Behind Closed Doors and then read The Breakdown. I liked this one, but I loved the first one and I am looking forward to the next one. Note: These are all stand-alone books, they are not a series.
- The Breakdown by B.A. Paris
- Hardback: 336 pages
- Paperback: 352 pages
- Kindle: 2872 KB
- Audiobook: 9 hours and 20 minutes Narrated by Georgia Maguire Macmillan Audio
- Audio CD: Macmillan Audio
- Publisher: St. Martin’s Press (July 18, 2017)
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