Monday, April 7, 2014

In The Blood by Lisa Unger

Lana Granger is a liar. She has told so many lies about where she comes from and who she is, that even she can't remember the truth. 
Eleven-year-old Luke likes to play games. He is used to controlling the people in his life. But now that Lana has taken a a part-time job looking after him, he may have met his match.
Then Lana's closest friend Beck goes missing and Lana finds herself lying again - to friends, to the police, to herself. 
But someone knows all about Lana's lies. And they are dying to tell.


I received this copy from the publisher for an open and honest review.

Being an avid fan of horror and crime novels, I was thrilled to receive this copy of 'In The Blood' from Simon & Schuster. Like all book worms, I love discovering new authors to add to my reading list and Lisa Unger has become the latest author I will be seeking out and recommending to all my friends and family. 

'In The Blood' is an extremely clever crime thriller full of twists and turns that will have you gasping for breath! As with many other books I love, this novel throws you thick and fast into action from the very start. The reader is immediately informed that something terrible has happened but the whos, whats, whens and wheres are unanswered until the end of the novel. 

'My palms feel hot and sticky. I lift them up and look to see they are covered in blood. The lines on my hands in stark white relief against the red black. I am overcome by panicked confusion. What happened?'

The protagonist, Lana Granger, is a girl full of guarded secrets who would rather die than let the world uncover her true self. Taking a part-time job alongside her college course, Lana meets eleven-year-old Luke, an extremely troubled young boy who likes to play controlling games. Believing she can help him, Lana takes a job as Luke's babysitter and this is ultimately where the trouble begins. 

'What was there between us in that very first moment that would have told, if observed, everything that would follow? Nothing. I am sure of it. He was that good.'

Running alongside the plot, Lisa Unger exposes the reader to a series of diary entries written by a depressed mother whose young son won't stop crying. Throughout these entries we see the child grow up into a disturbed and dangerous young man. Lisa Unger intelligently weaves subtle clues into these diary entries that will eventually leave the reader reeling in shock. I loved that the twists and turns slowly dawned on me rather than being thrown slap bang in my face!

This novel has such a clever plot that I don't want to say too much in fear of giving anything away. Along with it's subtle twists and turns this novel is all about human behaviour - the good and the bad. Do we have the ability to make our own choices? Or are we wired to behave in a certain way from the moment we are born?

This is an exceptional psychological thriller that will captivate you from beginning to end.  A five star read that I highly recommend! 

'I am a person with secrets. And I guard them carefully, keep them locked in a box inside myself. I rarely open the lid of my psyche to look inside. Shame was a thick cloak that I wrapped around myself and hid beneath. It was dark and lonely, but at least it was safe.'


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