When a group of neighborhood women gathers, wine in hand, around a fire pit where their backyards meet one Saturday night, most of them are just ecstatic to have discovered that their baby monitors reach that far. It’s a rare kid-free night, and they’re giddy with it. They drink too much, and the conversation turns personal. By Monday morning, one of them is gone.
Everyone knows something about everyone else in the quirky small Ohio town of Yellow Springs, but no one can make sense of the disappearance. Kristin was a sociable twin mom, college administrator, and doctor’s wife who didn’t seem all that bothered by her impending divorce—and the investigation turns up more questions than answers, with her husband, Paul, at the center. For her closest neighbor, Clara, the incident triggers memories she thought she’d put behind her—and when she’s unable to extract herself from the widening circle of scrutiny, her own suspicions quickly grow. But the neighborhood’s newest addition, Izzy, is determined not to jump to any conclusions—especially since she’s dealing with a crisis of her own. As the police investigation goes from a media circus to a cold case, the neighbors are forced to reexamine what’s going on behind their own closed doors—and to ask how well anyone really knows anyone else. Audible Audio
Published March 27th 2018 by Macmillan Audio
Three stars: A thriller that fizzles. No big twists or surprises. A lot of drama for a weak payout.
A relaxing Saturday evening around the fire pit for a group of women turns into a mystery after one of them goes missing without a trace. Memories of that evening are fuzzy as everyone drank too much wine, but no one can recall a conversation that indicated that something was wrong for one of them. Now Kristin, is gone leaving behind a wake of questions. Why did Kristin run? Was she a victim of domestic abuse? Did she come to harm?
What I Liked:
- From What I Saw was a book that starts out engaging and interesting. A relaxing night of conversation and wine around the fire pit results with one of them going missing. The tale follows two of the women, Claire and Izzy, as they attempt to figure out what happened to their neighbor, a woman they thought they knew.
- The book is told via two different view points. There is Claire, a young mother, who ended her career to stay home with her young children. She was the closest to the missing woman, and she is reeling from the aftermath of her missing friend. Then there is Izzy, her life is in turmoil, after her sister married her best friend. It took some time to adjust to the different voices, but I found that I liked the dual narratives, even though I much preferred Claire’s voice. Each woman offered an entirely different view which kept things interesting.
- In between the chapter there are is another view point, that comes from the missing woman. On the surface, Kristin appeared to have the perfect life, but appearances are deceiving. Kristin reveals little details about her supposedly perfect life, helping the reader to put together the pieces.
- Aside from Claire and Izzy, there are many other characters that I enjoyed. Each of the women at the gathering has insight, and I enjoyed getting to know them a bit better. I also liked Claire’s husband, Benny.
- I also appreciated that the detective handling the case turned out to be a kind and caring person. I liked that. It was refreshing to get a competent law enforcement official with a heart.
- The ending, though not a jaw dropper, delivers one interesting piece of information that I didn’t see coming. Even though I was wanting a big, clever twist, I was satisfied that this ended well without lingering questions or unrealistic twists.
And The Not So Much:
- I was disappointed that nothing really happened. All the evidence is laid out early on so it is easy to figure out what happened to Kristin. I kept expecting some big stunning development, but that doesn’t happen. Basically, there is a lot of drama around a disappearance mystery that is too easy to piece together. The ending was a fizzle.
- I was not a big fan of Izzy. She has all this romantic drama, and she spends the majority of the book feeling sorry for herself. I thought at first that she had been betrayed in the worst way, so I felt some compassion toward her, then when I learned the truth, I lost patience with her. She makes some stupid decisions, and I found her constant pity parties annoying.
- I didn’t need a romance, but then there was the possibility of a healthy relationship developing for one of the characters, and then she turns it down for the dumbest reason. Annoying.
- This book attempts to be a thrilling mystery with a twist at the end, but it ended up being a fizzle of a mystery with a rather uninteresting finale. The time put in wasn’t worth the pay out.
Not That I Could Tell was a book that I picked up expecting a thriller with a dramatic twist at the end. Instead I got a book with a lot of unnecessary drama, a weak mystery and a fizzle at the end. If you are wanting a stunning thriller, this is not for you. It was far too easy to piece together the mystery. However, it was still an interesting read.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own, and I was not compensated for this review.