To help get aquatinted with their new land Anna (the name is no coincidence) begins taking German classes where very quickly she meets a good looking guy and has a fling. A no-strings just for fun fling.
In fact this is just her latest affair attempting to replace the lost love that haunts her from the past. Bruno, her husband never seems to suspect Anna, although oddly one of her children does not look very much like Bruno who is cold, distant, and absorbed in his work. After all he’s an international banker. Little surprise that Anna has turned to other men for emotional and physical satisfaction.
Throughout the novel visions of her lost true love and first affair are shown as flashbacks comparing even the sex to the past suggesting the reason for recent adventures is an attempt to relive the one great affair.
Anna’s living on the edge of a knife comes to a head when she gets caught. A friend spots her and makes an off-hand comment to Bruno. Family law in Switzerland is apparently 50 years behind the times since Anna must leave her children and her home in a tragic scene. The reader will feel horrible for the character even if they do not approve of her morality. Anna is feisty, independent, but lost in her new world of Swiss upper middle class life. And sexy.
I won’t give away the ending but if you have read or seen the movie Anna Karenina you’ll understand why Essbaum named her character Anna. This is overall an excellent read and I think women will especially understand the distraught Anna and her despairs.
This story revolves around Reeve who at the age of 11 was abducted and held for many years in a basement by a psychopath. We don’t know much about what the guy did to Reeve other than tattoo pictures on her body. Later we are told she escapes because he put her in the trunk of a car and wandered into a car accident.
The kidnapper was arrested and was “sentenced” to an asylum. Presumably he was found not guilty due to insanity, but the author never explains this and I’m not sure she understands the insanity defense doesn’t necessarily mean the perpetrator gets to reside in a pleasant medium-security hospital, just because he’s looney. Our prisons are full of crazy people who nevertheless couldn’t mount a temporary insanity defense at trial. After the John Hinckley verdict following the Reagan assassination attempt every state tightened the insanity defense. The author never tells exactly what the verdict of the trial was although the expert psychiatrist testifying for him is a central character.
Of course Flint, the psycho, manages to escape his pleasant quarters and resumes his career kidnapping young women. Incredibly Reeve is allowed by the FBI to participate in the hunt for Flint like an amateur sleuth. This sets up the big confrontation since Flint plans to recapture Reeve.
To keep Reeve safe she is sent to stay at an FBI agent’s house. With no explanation the author gets Flint into the agent’s house and gets her killed. Flint abducts Reeve again, kills a couple additional people, and thus begins the final chase which is exciting, but again not as frightening for Reeve as it could have been.
I seriously doubt law enforcement authorities would allow a victim, especially one whom the psychopath may be chasing assist in crime scene investigation and interviewing potential witnesses. Seems much more likely they would send her someplace entirely safe until the guy was found. Maybe I’m blood thirsty but the short choppy chapters crashing to an obvious conclusion left me blasé.
Steve E Clark is a New York Times Best Selling Author of Justice Is for the Lonely and Justice Is for the Deserving. Kristen Kerry Novels Of Suspense. You can purchase his books via his site at www.KristenKerryNovelsOfSuspense.com or request it at your local book store. Want to know more about Steve Clark or read more reviews? Check him out here.