This book is very entertaining and hard to put down from the first page. I have read beautiful lies and liked this author from the start, after reading this one I am even more impressed. This book does bounce back and forth between then and now and fantasies played out by the mind but it makes the ending so much better in doing so. This book emphasizes the power of the mind and reminds you that no one is innocent.
Throughout the book it is hard to figure out if the story is all a fantasy Annie's mind created to make itself whole again after events in her life were so tamatic that she is unable to accept them, or if the bizzar things happening to her are real. As a teen Ophlia, later known as Annie, moves to Florida with her mother who marries a mass murderer and rapist who is in prison. Marlowe, the murderer's son, becomes her instant stepbrother, lover and posessor. The story bounces back and forth between present and past memories and experiences. The story is very scarry and definitely a page turner. Annie is a very likeable character who you will want to come out whole in the end.
I really enjoyed this book! As others have mentioned, the book runs on three seperate tracks: the main story line, where "Annie" is a wife and mother with a past she can't perfectly remember, that past as Ophelia, which comes back to her in bits and pieces, and the present, where she's dealing with her imperfectly merged lives. Add to that that her mental issues make her an unintentionally unreliable narrator, and you have a book with twists and turns that may or may not be real.
I liked that the book jumped between past and present, slowly revealing the back story as the action took place in the present. I found that it heightened the level of suspense for me, as did the unreliability of the narration.
Interesting book. I was really into it-it involved the reader into the plot. I did find the ending a bit weak though (it could have been me). I would recommend reading it. I feel it is worthy of the time and is one you will remember.
I really liked this book. I kept reading on to find out exactly what was going on with the main character. I couldn't put it down.
I absolutely loved this book! I picked this up on a whim and have never been more rewarded with an impulse purchase. I couldn't put it down and yes, I lost sleep over it but totally worth it. I have read Unger's other books since but this one is my favorite. So many twists and turns you really feel like your in the driver's seat in this one.
This is not a book I will be reposting I would much prefer to have a copy on my bookshelf permanantly. As pyschological thrillers go this is by far one of the best (maybe the best) one I have read to date. Never knowing exactly the details and having it wrapped up all pretty at the end was one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Read this book!
Very well written, will want to keep turning the pages on this one!
Annie died once as Ophelia and will have to die as Annie to protect her family and find the people who are searching for her.
There are many good authors out there who write enjoyable, well done novels on murders or serial killers with good suspense and usually a little romance. This novel is so superior to that genre. It is so literate and intelligent. It is character driven and provides amazing psychological depth to all the characters.
We have Annie Powers Gray who has a very troubled past. She grew up in an abusive household and a serial killer became a member of her family at an early age. Her innocence was destroyed, she lost all ability to see any clarity in life and found love and identity where she could. As victims do, she became easy target for one particular predator and became his puppet as she lost her own identity more and more.
She marries the man who saved her from this life and supposedly killed this man who haunted her life. She reinvents her identity and starts life anew. But is he really dead? Things start to happen that show maybe he isn't. But are these things really happening or all in her mind?
Lisa Unger has created a psychological suspense novel of the highest caliber here. She has done her research and treats her main character and how she deals with her abuse with respect and knowledge. Every aspect of Annie and how her life works due to the abuse she has endured is carefully illusrated and explained. The victim is shown openly and honestly and she clearly shows what victims such as Annie actually do endure perfectly. Then she adds to this an amzing, edge of your seat story line that has no holes. You ride the journey with Annie and there are twists and turns that will have you just as confused as she is.
But the bottom line is - it all works. This book is very intelligent as I stated and in no way pop fiction. The plot contains serial killers, murder, childhood abuse, mental illness and all are dealt with accurately, respectfully and with the highest skill.
This novel is very intense and is one of the most satisfying reads I have had all year. I will now read all the books by Lisa Unger and put her on my list of favorite authors. She put me on a suspenseful journey that was so strong I could not put the book
Good, good book! Makes you think as you read. The first book I have read of Unger's and I was quite impressed. I would read more of hers anytime.
WOW! If you are looking for a thriller this is it! Twists and turns you can never guess what is coming next. Just when you think you know, you don't! I read this in one day. I could NOT put it down. It will keep you guessing until then end and then maybe still...
I am a pretty author loyal fan. The PBS libarian recommend as a close match to another book I wanted. I was very pleased with this book. I love mystery and suspense and this author actually told 2 stories in the book...one current day and one from the current day character was growing up (a specific time frame). I will not spoil the book but if you like Patterson, Cronwell, etc. you will like this book.
LOVED IT! The characters were amazing. The story sucked you in and wouldn't let you go. When someone you love tells you lies and minipulates, it is amazing how your mind still knows the truth. The hardest part is to not doubt yourself and feel as you are crazy. However when the truth comes out, the relief is so great... not just about learning the truth, but to realize you were not crazy. This is a thriller of a tale! A must read!!
Great book. I read Beautiful lies and liked it so much I decided to try another book by Lisa Unger. I couldn't put the book Black Out down. At first kind of confusing because It goes back and forth in time, but this made the book interesting. All through the book I kept trying to figure out the ending. I love when there is a twist.
Loved this...SO Much better than Beautiful Liar and I'm so glad I gave her another shot. My one caveat for those of you who prefer everything all wrapped up in a pretty bow in the end....you don't really get that with Unger (at least not in the two books I've read). Her endings seem to be a bit more true to real life...lots of stuff gets wrapped up, lots of questions are answered but some stuff you have to accept you'll never have the answer to. It works for her (and me) but might not work for some readers...
Loved this book! It was better than Beautiful Lies. It will keep you turning pages well into the night. You just don't know who to trust or "who done it"....!
Excellent read. Full of suspense.
Too much skipping back & forth & the book has 358 pages. Glad it wasn't more for the story to drag out longer
Too much skipping back & forth & the book has 358 pages. Glad it wasn't more for the story to drag out longer. Taking 3 turns between past & present was irritating
Very interesting book with a lot of twist and turns. The end is a little far fetched, but a suspenseful book none the less.
I don't think I've ever read a book quite like this and I loved it! Many, many twists, yet I didn't have any problems keeping track. This book delves not only into serial crime, but also the victim and the long-term mental anguish. Excellent read!
On the surface, Annie Powers's life in a wealthy Florida suburb with her husband, Gray, and her daughter, Victory, is happy and idyllic. But that all changes when Annie sensed that the demons of her previous life have resurfaced & to her horror, are now creeping up on her. Disturbing events, the appearance of a dark figure on the beach, the murder of her psychologist - trigger strange & confusing memories for Annie, who realizes she must quickly piece them together before her new life is taken away from her
Too much skipping back & forth & the book has 358 pages, not the 500 that it claims. Glad it wasn't more for the story to drag out longer
I thought I would love this book. I fought halfway through it and could never get into it. Maybe someone else will find it more to their liking.
I did not enjoy this book at all and found it most predictable. The only good thing that I can say is that I enjoyed the authours description about what happens to things that enter the waterways deep under the earth of Florida.
This is a wild and confused tale of a woman (Ophelia) who escapes her serial killer boyfriend, Marlowe by killing him and faking her own death. Of course, she has help with this. She has made a new life for herself and has a family of her own now. She is messed up pyschologically and she lasts roughly 5 years before she believes that Marlowe has returned for her. In order to save her daughter, she runs. The second half of the book is her flight and fight to survive.
This book slips from present to past and back again. Blackout is an intriguing mystery that keeps you reading if only to figure what the hell has happened. Lots of surprises and betrayals
Annie was born under the name Ophelia March but now lives under her new name Annie Power. She knows about the reasons why she is wearing this new identity completely different from the live she lived before but she does not remember the details that linger in her subconscious mind only waiting for the right moment to resurface. For Annie, her family and her new life to survive she has to remember and ultimately reconnect with the girl Ophelia.
Her nemesis Marlowe Geary, the first person she fell in love with, is a gruesome killer and Annie watched him kill women. She's almost lost her mind and is his will-less puppet when she is rescued by her now husband Gray who once was paid by her father to find her.
Now Annie finds and sees disturbing clues from her past. The ultimate clue for her is a necklace she finds on the beach. The other half is hidden in a little box under her bed. Marlowe once gave it to her with the words that she belongs to him and one day he would come and get her back so that they can live together again. He'd leave the necklace in her sight for her to find.
Annie knows her existence has to die - again and that is what she does. Leaving her husband and daughter behind she faces her fear to find Marlowe and end her suffering when things turn around and Annie finds herself in a much bigger, manipulative picture.
I found myself not really caring for the book. The author pieces together the story, making constantly time jumps to reveal Annie's past. Nothing wrong with that but I found it annoying and too much at times. Once a chapter got interesting it was left to jump back to the past which annoyed and sort of confused me quite a bit.
I liked the crossing of reality and fiction in Annie's mind. Given a little thought about it it makes sense that Annie partly experiences things that aren't there but I figure not everyone has an existing medical background to understand how the mind works through traumatic experiences. I would have liked an introduction to that in the beginning of the book. It seems this is a major complaint of reviewers on Amazon.
However, there is a lot that could have been better, more thought through but the plot is a fine one and I give credit for that and a bit of thinking outside of the box.
I have to say I really didn't like this book too much. I could have liked it, the story line is intriguing. That being said, I have never liked books that jump around from the present to the distant past, to the more recent past and then back to the present. Well, you get the idea. I like for stories to flow without having to turn the page and wonder what year we're going to be in. All in all, I would never read it again and I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, but I know a lot of people liked it and I'm in the minority, but I just wanted to add my two cents worth.
Excellent book and fast paced.