Published by Berkley Publishing on July 11, 2017
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In the breathtaking new thriller from David Bell, bestselling author of Since She Went Away and Somebody I Used to Know, the fate of two missing teenage girls becomes a father's worst nightmare....
Just a year and a half after the tragic death of his wife, Bill Price's fifteen-year-old daughter, Summer, and her best friend, Haley, disappear. Days later, the girls are found in a city park. Haley is dead at the scene, while Summer is left beaten beyond recognition and clinging to life.
As Bill holds vigil over Summer's bandaged body, the only sound the unconscious girl can make is one cryptic and chilling word: No. And the more time Bill spends with Summer, the more he wonders what happened to her. Or if the injured girl in the hospital bed is really his daughter at all.
When troubling new questions about Summer's life surface, Bill is not prepared for the aftershocks. He'll soon discover that both the living and the dead have secrets. And that searching for the truth will tear open old wounds that pierce straight to the heart of his family...
Bring Her Home by David Bell ruined me for other books. I loved it. When I read it a few days ago, I was completely absorbed and even a little frustrated when I had to put the book down to do real like things, like take care of my family.
Bill Price is looking for answers as the book begins. His daughter, Summer, has been found after being missing for several days. She is in the hospital, almost completely unable to communicate after being badly beaten. Her best friend who was also missing, was not alive when she was found. So this book opens with much of the crime already having been committed and an investigation already underway. Bill is hoping that Summer can begin to heal and there can be an investigation and prosecution and things can slowly get back to normal but oh boy there is still more to come. Twists. Twists everywhere.
This book was a “total package” book for me. I loved everything about it. I loved the cover, which caught my eye and is essentially why I grabbed the book from the shelf in the first place. I loved the way the book opened. I loved the characters and the steady pacing. I loved the short chapters and the twists that made me gasp and talk back to the book. I have a love/hate relationship with book hangovers like the one I experienced after I finished reading Bring Her Home. (They’re the best because you experience them when you read something fantastic, but they’re kind of awful because nothing you pick up to afterward is any good. I tried about a dozen books before I found one I could stick with after Bring Her Home. It took several days.)
With Bill Price, we have a guy that lost his wife before the book started – he’s still grieving that and coming to grips with what he did/didn’t do in that relationship. He’s also struggling to successfully parent a teenage daughter, which is always hard, let’s be honest — now his teenage daughter has gone missing and been beaten to within an inch of her life? Good grief! Bill is beating himself up over some things that happened with Summer before she left on the day she went missing. Bill’s POV throughout this story is GOLDEN. He is the only one telling this story – one perspective throughout – so we’re privy not only to his thought processes as he constantly second-guesses himself over what he thinks he could have done better, but we are able to see his humanity as he struggles to wait on the police investigation to play out. He is a father and he wants answers, now. And justice, dammit.
This book is full of one of my favorite bookish things: desperation. Bill is desperate to get to the bottom of everything that has happened before the book begins and everything that is happening now. Desperation drives people to do and say things that they otherwise wouldn’t, and I may be a weirdo for this, but I love reading those stories. As one could expect, as the story progresses, the desperation increases, which just made me love it more.
Bring Her Home is a little different from many of the thriller books that I’ve read lately because I was able to stay in Bill’s head for the duration of the story. It seems like most often, there are multiple POVs, which is okay. But I loved riding the story out with one perspective this time. Bill goes through so many emotions throughout the course that I felt like I was on an emotional roller coaster along with him, and it made the story that much better. It also made it better that he is a parent, because I was able to relate to him in this way, at least to some degree.
I just loved this one. It was perfectly paced, perfectly suspenseful, and the ending was completely satisfying. I genuinely cannot think of anything I didn’t like about this one. I would love to read more books like this one right now. (Also, sidenote, but this is my first of David Bell’s novels. It’s so exciting to me that I have his entire backlist to go through.)