In a world cluttered with lousy thrillers, Amy Gentry's Good As Gone is a gem—a multi-layered mystery—of kidnapping, and reappearance....
Why I love it
Julie Whitaker was thirteen when she was kidnapped at knifepoint from her bedroom while her younger sister watched helplessly. For the next two decades, with no clues and no body, the Whitaker family moved on as best as they could without Julie. Until one day, there's a knock on the door...
And standing there is Julie! Or, a woman claiming to be Julie. The Whitakers are so overwhelmed by her return that it doesn't occur to them that "Julie" might not be who she says she is. And when a private detective reaches out to Julie's mother with some shocking information, the family will have to confront the fact that the woman in their house may be a stranger to them in more than one way.
In a world cluttered with lousy thrillers, Amy Gentry's Good As Gone is a gem. Told in chapters that alternate between past and present, Gentry has created a multi-layered mystery—of the kidnapping, and the reappearance. It's a mystery-in-a-mystery!
And this is also the story of how the family copes with these heart-wrenching and shocking turns of events. The mother feels animosity toward her younger daughter for not calling out or getting help while Julie was being kidnapped, and the sister swims in her own guilt. From this, a giant chasm grows between them, seemingly irreparable.
Losing a child is one of the most horrible things that can happen, and with the added burden of not knowing what happened, such grief could tear a family apart. Gentry masterfully presents a believable story of a kidnapping and all the complicated factors that go along with it, with the right amount of drama, suspense, and intrigue. It is a beautiful book.