The Horror Honeys: Hardcover Honey's Haunted Bookclub ~ The Good Girl

Hardcover Honey's Haunted Bookclub ~ The Good Girl

A Book of the Week Review by Jocelyn

The Good Girl – Mary Kubica

I wanted SO badly to like this book – first time female novelist, edgy cover image, intriguing storyline….

Mia Dennett is missing. The daughter of a prominent Chicago judge, Mia has shunned the family tradition of law and is an art teacher at a local urban school. She lives alone in a little apartment and doesn’t see much of her family, father James, mother Eve, and hard-charging lawyer sis Grace. When Mia doesn’t show up for work one day, a concerned friend calls her mother and the case immediately becomes headline news. Where is Mia? She was supposed to meet her boyfriend at a local bar, but security cameras capture footage of her leaving with a completely different man. Now neither has been seen in weeks. Despite her father’s scoffing that she’s probably just run off, her mother Eve is obviously concerned and as time passes, grows ever more so.

The book is narrated for the most part by three voices – Eve, Detective Gabe Hoffman, and Colin Thatcher, the man who has snatched Mia. The chapters are helpfully labeled “Before” or “After”, each with the oh so cool backwards R to let you know you are reading a thriller. Colin, it turns out, has been hired by a shady criminal contact named Dalmar to snatch Mia, but after their brief time together, he feels compelled to run away with her (by force) instead of turning her over to Dalmar and his men. They abscond to a remote cabin far north in Wisconsin, Mia being held at gunpoint all the way and afraid for her life.

In the “after” chapters, Mia exhibits signs of amnesia, asks to be called “Chloe” (also the name of her childhood imaginary friend) and seems to have come down with a slight case of pregnancy. What could have happened to her in her time at the cabin with her abductor??

Comparisons to “Gone Girl” are inevitable, and in fact two of the blurbs on the book make reference to it.  Sadly, this book is a pale imitation of “Gone Girl” and nowhere near as engaging. The “twist” can be seen coming from miles away, and you’ll forgive me if I don’t find a Stockholm Syndrome romance dressed up as a mystery to be worth your time.

For the most part, Kubica does a good job with her characters and world-building and I am certainly open to giving her next book a try – but I felt a little rooked by this one and its clever marketing.  Kudos to her PR team though.

The verdict: 2 out of 5 dysfunctional families for this one.