Ever wanted a fresh start? This thriller makes it happen. But the journey there is darker than you could imagine.
Good to know
Claire Cook has a perfect life. Married to the scion of a political dynasty, with a Manhattan townhouse and a staff of ten, her surroundings are elegant, her days flawlessly choreographed, and her future auspicious. But behind closed doors, nothing is quite as it seems. That perfect husband has a temper that burns as bright as his promising political career, and he's not above using his staff to track Claire's every move, making sure she's living up to his impossible standards. But what he doesn't know is that Claire has worked for months on a plan to vanish.
A chance meeting in an airport bar brings her together with a woman whose circumstances seem equally dire. Together they make a last-minute decision to switch tickets—Claire taking Eva's flight to Oakland, and Eva traveling to Puerto Rico as Claire. They believe the swap will give each of them the head start they need to begin again somewhere far away. But when the flight to Puerto Rico goes down, Claire realizes it's no longer a head start but a new life. Cut off, out of options, with the news of her death about to explode in the media, Claire will assume Eva's identity, and along with it, the secrets Eva fought so hard to keep hidden.
The Last Flight
John F. Kennedy Airport, New York Tuesday, February 22 The Day of the Crash
Terminal 4 swarms with people, the smell of wet wool and jet fuel thick around me. I wait for her, just inside the sliding glass doors, the frigid winter wind slamming into me whenever they open, and instead force myself to visualize a balmy Puerto Rican breeze, laced with the scent of hibiscus and sea salt. The soft, accented Spanish swirling around me like a warm bath, blotting out the person I was before.
The air outside rumbles as planes lift into the sky, while inside garbled announcements blare over the loudspeaker. Somewhere behind me, an older woman speaks in sharp, staccato Italian. But I don’t look away from the curb, my eyes trained on the crowded sidewalk outside the terminal, searching for her, anchoring my belief—and my entire future—on the fact that she will come.
I know only three things about her: her name, what she looks like, and that her flight departs this morning. My advantage—she doesn’t know anything about me. I fight down panic that I might have missed her somehow. That she might already be gone, and with her, the opportunity for me to slip out of this life and into a new one.
Why I love it
It’s that time of year when I would normally be collecting books to keep my mind busy on a beach as my body soaks up the sun and takes a much needed rest. Like most, I probably won’t be taking a vacation this year, at least in the physical sense, which makes these mental vacations through reading all the more important. In my opinion, there is nothing like a good thriller to give your mind that perfect escape.
New Yorker Claire Cook appears to have the perfect life: wealth, prestige, and a handsome husband forging a path into public office. What no one knows, however, is that Claire’s husband is controlling and physically abusive. Isolated and desperate, Claire crafts a plan to disappear and leave her life—and everyone in it—behind. When her meticulous preparations are scuppered at the last moment, a chance encounter at the airport bar with another young woman suddenly seems like a fated intervention. They switch plane tickets and Claire boards a flight to San Francisco, where she later learns that the plane she was supposed to be on has gone down…
How many of us have wondered during some stressful time, what would happen if I just walked out of my life? I know I’ve had these thoughts in moments of despair. Julie Clark has deftly woven the lives of two women pushed to the brink into an exciting thriller that examines what happens if you try to leave your past behind… and asks if anyone, in today’s world of constant surveillance, can truly disappear.
Member ratings (31,392)
Fort Collins, CO
This book kept me captivated from the start. I didn’t want to put it down. I loved as the Claire and Eva’s stories unfolded and you began to understand their depths and the longing to break free. ❤️
Really enjoyed this read! It bounced between 2 characters but it was easy to follow. Great storyline and everything tied together in a way that wasn’t unrealistic. Would read more by this author, 5⭐️!
Its been a while since I’ve found a fictional book I haven’t been able to put down. If i didn’t have daily obligations and work this would have been finished in 1 sitting. Highly recommend this book!
Hands down the best thriller I’ve read this entire year! This book parallels the “Me Too” movement and clearly takes inspiration from Brett Kavanaugh (#GoBoofYourselfBrett). Believe. Women. Period.
This book was AMAZING!!! You flip between the two characters who switched tickets - Claire’s story after leaving her husband, and Eva’s life before she swaps tickets. So many twists and a good ending!