Trust Me
An accused killer insists she's innocent of a heinous murder.A grieving journalist surfaces from the wreckage of her shattered life.Their unlikely alliance leads to a dangerous cat and mouse game that will leave you breathless.Who can you trust when you can't trust yourself?Trust Me is the chilling standalone novel of psychological suspense and manipulation that award-winning author and renowned investigative reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan was born to write.

Trust Me Details

TitleTrust Me
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseAug 28th, 2018
PublisherForge Books
ISBN-139780765393074
Rating
GenreThriller, Mystery, Fiction, Mystery Thriller, Suspense

Trust Me Review

  • Fran
    January 1, 1970
    Journalist Mercer Hennessey was a full time mother to daughter, Sophie, putting her career on hold. Nothing could have prepared her for the accident that took the life of lawyer husband, Dex and three year old, Sophie. Her steamy bathroom mirror displayed 442, the number of days since the accident. Grief kept Dex and Sophie alive. Mercer would not allow her sorrow to retreat. She had become reclusive, seldom leaving her house. She kept replaying the car's horrendous skid into an oak tree on a sl Journalist Mercer Hennessey was a full time mother to daughter, Sophie, putting her career on hold. Nothing could have prepared her for the accident that took the life of lawyer husband, Dex and three year old, Sophie. Her steamy bathroom mirror displayed 442, the number of days since the accident. Grief kept Dex and Sophie alive. Mercer would not allow her sorrow to retreat. She had become reclusive, seldom leaving her house. She kept replaying the car's horrendous skid into an oak tree on a slick, wet road.Merce's former editor, Katherine Craft wants her to return to work. Katherine insistently pitches an assignment. The Assignment: watch courtroom testimony on the same video feed used by TV stations covering the murder trial of Ashlyn Bryant. Dubbed the "Baby Boston" Murder Trial, Ashlyn is accused of killing two year old daughter, Tasha and dumping her body in Boston Harbor. Katherine's expectation is that two weeks after the verdict, Merce will have written a true crime story on the death of toddler, Tasha Nicole Bryant. Based on wall-to -wall news coverage, the court of public opinion predicts a guilty verdict. Merce just might write the next bestseller.Merce is plagued by nightmares. She experiences loss and a fierce love for Dex and Sophie. Daily tabulation on the bathroom mirror seems to connect her with them. Merce hopes that by covering this case she can replace some of her grief by focusing on someone else's loss. If she detests Ashlyn, some of her own self loathing might dissipate.The novel starts slowly with a missing toddler, expanded search and discovery of the body in a duct taped garbage bag recovered from Boston Harbor...but "a body decomposes more quickly in water". Can a jury find Ashlyn Bryant guilty without a reasonable doubt? Will Merce's book depicting the true crime be completed within two weeks of the verdict? One thing is true, Ashlyn Bryant is deceptive and manipulative. She seems to be a pathological liar. "The verdict isn't always the truth".It is clear that Ashlyn Bryant is all about herself. She constantly erects smoke screens, bogus people, bogus scenarios. Is Ashlyn responsible for Tasha's death? It seems unknowable. For Merce, without the facts of the true crime, all bets are off and her non-stop journalistic efforts will be in vain. What really happened? "Trust Me" by Hank Phillippi Ryan will keep you guessing.Thank you Macmillan-Tor/Forge and Net Galley for the opportunity to read and review "Trust Me".
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  • Jamie Rosenblit
    January 1, 1970
    For the love of all that is holy (books!), please give me half stars already, Goodreads!!!!This is such a true 4.5 for me that I really couldn’t decide whether to round up or down...so up it is! This was my first book by Ryan and it raises such an interesting premise about who can you trust and how does it impact how you feel about said situations. Mercer is grieving the loss of her husband and young daughter when she is approached to write a book about a current murder trial (a mother accused o For the love of all that is holy (books!), please give me half stars already, Goodreads!!!!This is such a true 4.5 for me that I really couldn’t decide whether to round up or down...so up it is! This was my first book by Ryan and it raises such an interesting premise about who can you trust and how does it impact how you feel about said situations. Mercer is grieving the loss of her husband and young daughter when she is approached to write a book about a current murder trial (a mother accused of killing her own young daughter, a la Casey Anthony) - is it the fresh wound of Mercer’s own loss that has her convinced without a doubt that Ashlyn killed her daughter or is Ashlyn actually guilty? I had so many changing guesses throughout this book and I need some of my book buddies to get to this one so we can discuss already!!!I received an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.
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  • 3 no 7
    January 1, 1970
    “Trust Me” by Hank Phillippi Ryan , is a first person narrative by Mercer Hennessey, who is struggling to go on after an accident that claimed her child and her husband. “Using one forefinger I write on the bathroom mirror...442…Four hundred forty-two days since the car accident that destroyed my family.”Mercer’s friend and business associate Katherine Craft, wants her to go back to work, to write again. She has the perfect assignment; Mercer will write a true crime book about Ashlyn Bryant, a w “Trust Me” by Hank Phillippi Ryan , is a first person narrative by Mercer Hennessey, who is struggling to go on after an accident that claimed her child and her husband. “Using one forefinger I write on the bathroom mirror...442…Four hundred forty-two days since the car accident that destroyed my family.”Mercer’s friend and business associate Katherine Craft, wants her to go back to work, to write again. She has the perfect assignment; Mercer will write a true crime book about Ashlyn Bryant, a woman on trial, accused of murdering her daughter, Tasha Nicole. Mercer, however, is tentative about her decision to write the book. “Now I’ve agreed to a job that might be impossible. Now I have no choice.” “Trust Me” progresses as a book within a book where journalism and crime collide. Readers follow Mercer’s first person account of her own personal demons, and at the same time, read chapter after chapter of her “soon to be best seller” about the murder trial tentative titled “Little Girl Lost.”Mercer has a front-seat view of the trial via closed circuit TV and scrutinizes related documents one after the other. Nevertheless, she finds more questions than answers. Which version of “the truth” is really the truth, and how will she really tell? Does everyone lie about everything? The trial is only part of the story, and the real trauma begins after the trial. Every life is changed by the jury’s verdict, and no one will ever be the same. This fast-paced thriller seems ripped from current headlines. Accountability and dishonesty come to the forefront, and tormenting suspense and unscrupulous manipulation fill every page. I was given a review copy of “Trust Me” by Hank Phillippi Ryan, and I highly recommend it. I could not read it fast enough, so clear your schedule; you will not be able to stop reading once you start.
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  • Judy Collins
    January 1, 1970
    Review to follow.
  • Viccy
    January 1, 1970
    Mercer Hennessey lost her family over a year ago in a tragic car accident. Katherine Craft, her friend and a book agent, contacts her with a great book proposal: Mercer will write a book covering the trial of Ashlyn Bryant, accused of murdering her daughter, Tasha Nicole, and dumping her body in Boston Harbor. As Katherine predicted, the book practically writes itself, until it doesn't, when Ashlyn is found "not guilty" by a jury of her peers. But, now Katherine has another idea, Ashlyn will mov Mercer Hennessey lost her family over a year ago in a tragic car accident. Katherine Craft, her friend and a book agent, contacts her with a great book proposal: Mercer will write a book covering the trial of Ashlyn Bryant, accused of murdering her daughter, Tasha Nicole, and dumping her body in Boston Harbor. As Katherine predicted, the book practically writes itself, until it doesn't, when Ashlyn is found "not guilty" by a jury of her peers. But, now Katherine has another idea, Ashlyn will move in with Mercer and Mercer will re-write the book as an "as-told-to" narrative nonfiction, in the vein of Truman Capote. But, things begin to go horribly wrong after Ashlyn moves in, Mercer begins to think she is losing her mind and...she may well be. Do not read this book before bedtime, I had to stop reading every few pages to calm myself down as the tension ratchets up. How will Mercer survive her encounter with a psychopath?
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  • Megan
    January 1, 1970
    Hank Phillippi Ryan's first standalone novel has many of the same elements that I have enjoyed in her Jane Ryland and Charlotte McNally series: interesting female characters, complex stories that take many twists and turns, and plot elements that could have been ripped from the headlines but are presented in fresh ways. Those series and this standalone novel draw on Ryan's journalistic background, which gives her stories and characters extraordinary depth and believability. While her earlier ser Hank Phillippi Ryan's first standalone novel has many of the same elements that I have enjoyed in her Jane Ryland and Charlotte McNally series: interesting female characters, complex stories that take many twists and turns, and plot elements that could have been ripped from the headlines but are presented in fresh ways. Those series and this standalone novel draw on Ryan's journalistic background, which gives her stories and characters extraordinary depth and believability. While her earlier series have a more "cozy mystery" feel, this stand-alone novel has a darker tone and is more of a psychological thriller.Mercer Hennessey, a grieving journalist, is approached to write a true crime account of Ashlyn Bryant, who is on trial in Boston for killing her daughter, Tasha Nicole. At first reluctant, Mercer eventually agrees to write the book and throws herself in her work. This may be just the thing she needs to help her emerge from her grief, or it could drive her into a blind obsession as she focuses on telling Ashlyn's and Tasha's stories and finding peace for herself following the losses of her own daughter and her husband. Ashlyn insists that she is innocent, but as Mercer watches the trial and pores over her research, she is increasingly convinced that Ashlyn is a cold-blooded killer. Mercer's interpretation of the events and drafts of the book she is writing are woven into the chapters; I found that technique effective and liked that it not only presented the pre-trial story, but also provided insights into Mercer's perspective. Parallels between Ashlyn's case and the Casey Anthony trial are evident throughout, as the story explores the psychological mindset of a woman accused of such a heinous crime.When Ashlyn and Mercer are brought together to work on the book, a complex game of cat and mouse ensues. The reader is left just as disoriented as Mercer as more details are revealed about what happened (or did it?) and begins wondering if master manipulator Ashlyn is actually telling the truth about her innocence.If you're a fan of psychological mysteries with unreliable narrators and twisty plots, be sure to check out this excellent thriller. It is a page-turner that will keep you guessing right up until the very end. I think this would be a good pick for a book club discussion, as there are many themes that could be explored. Many thanks to the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Cari
    January 1, 1970
    Possibly my favorite of Hank's books. Mercer Hennessey is a reporter struggling with grief after an accident claimed the lives of her husband and small daughter. She's assigned to write a book about the case of Ashlyn Bryant, a woman accused of killing her own small daughter. It may the hardest thing Mercer has to do, but she puts her mind to the task. That's pretty much all I can say without ruining the story - Mercer ends up in places and with people she never expected. It's a character study, Possibly my favorite of Hank's books. Mercer Hennessey is a reporter struggling with grief after an accident claimed the lives of her husband and small daughter. She's assigned to write a book about the case of Ashlyn Bryant, a woman accused of killing her own small daughter. It may the hardest thing Mercer has to do, but she puts her mind to the task. That's pretty much all I can say without ruining the story - Mercer ends up in places and with people she never expected. It's a character study, a legal thrill ride, and twisty mental games all wrapped up in one.
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  • Janet L.
    January 1, 1970
    I received an advance reader copy of this book. I have read other books by this author and was excited to read this one. “Trust Me”, this is an awesome book with twists and turns that I didn’t see coming. You will not be disappointed if you read this book, it is well worth it! Bravo for a job well done!
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  • Karen J
    January 1, 1970
    I just received AND read this thriller yesterday! Could not put it down until I fished at 1 am. Excellent writing, excruciating plot, ending....Oh My. I am an avid reader and the narration and twists in this story were amazing! Thank you for your excellent skill in bringing this reader into your imaginary yet so incredibly realistic world. The characters are unforgettable. My dreams were filled with them.
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  • Kathy Cunningham
    January 1, 1970
    Hank Phillippi Ryan’s TRUST ME is a riveting psychological thriller about two women connected by devastating tragedy. Mercer Hennessey is a journalist whose husband and 3-year-old daughter Sophie were killed in car accident over a year before the novel begins. She’s been haunted by the loss, feeling trapped in a stagnant present she can’t quite move past. When a friend asks her to write a true crime book about the trial of Ashlyn Brant, accused of murdering her own two-year-old daughter Tasha, M Hank Phillippi Ryan’s TRUST ME is a riveting psychological thriller about two women connected by devastating tragedy. Mercer Hennessey is a journalist whose husband and 3-year-old daughter Sophie were killed in car accident over a year before the novel begins. She’s been haunted by the loss, feeling trapped in a stagnant present she can’t quite move past. When a friend asks her to write a true crime book about the trial of Ashlyn Brant, accused of murdering her own two-year-old daughter Tasha, Mercer agrees. Maybe seeing Ashlyn’s guilt (and Mercer is certain Ashlyn is guilty) can help her move past her own torment. But is Ashlyn really guilty of murdering her daughter, or could something even more sinister be going on?The first part of TRUST ME is all about Mercer watching the trial and writing up chapters in her book, chapters which make it clear that Ashlyn is guilty. Of course, what she’s writing seems more fiction than fact, with her own spin on what happened to Ashlyn’s baby. Ashlyn has a reputation for being “really good at making stuff up,” which is something Mercer also says about herself. So at the heart of the novel are two questions: 1) Is Ashlyn lying about what really happened to little Tasha? and 2) Is Mercer lying about what really happened to little Sophie? Because the two little girls seem inevitably linked by Mercer’s subconscious. And the reader begins to suspect that Mercer is obsessed with Ashlyn’s guilt as a way to cover up her own.Ultimately, the novel becomes a story about both of these women and the tales they spin. I have to admit I was expecting a major twist as I got close to the end, but that really didn’t happen (the ending is actually fairly predictable and a bit too tidy, which was in itself a surprise). Ryan’s focus is not so much the trial or Ashlyn’s guilt or innocence as it is Mercer’s psychological state and what grief can do to our minds. Ashlyn in very much like Casey Anthony, the Florida mom acquitted of murdering her two-year-old daughter Caylee in 2008 (and Ashlyn herself mentions the connection, as if she believes that Casey Anthony’s acquittal is proof that Ashlyn, too, is innocent). I picked up on the Casey Anthony connection from the start (the details of both cases are incredibly similar, down to the discovery of the body, the role of the grandparents, and the timeline for the murders). But what’s important to Ryan is how Mercer deals with Ashlyn, how they manipulate each other and the truth, and what we need to move past grief and start again.I really did enjoy reading this novel – it really is a page-turner. I was a bit disappointed in the ending (it just felt too easy), but aside from that I loved the psychological complexity of the story. TRUST ME tells us we really can’t trust anyone, not even ourselves. But it also affirms that truth does exist, even if it takes a lot to find it. This one is definitely worth a read.[Please note: I was provided an Advance Reading Copy of this novel for review; the opinions expressed here are my own.]
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  • Mary Garrett
    January 1, 1970
    TRUST ME by Hank Phillippi RyanAn amazing book! I'm going to recommend it to my book club.Whom to trust? Does anyone tell the truth? What is the truth? Mercer Hennessey is sure she knows, but the case of “Baby Boston” shakes the foundations her certainty. It hits too close to her own tragedy. How can she stay objective? Can she? “I’ll have to imagine much of it. In other words, make it up. Some . . . will be near-fiction.”Everyone knows Ashlyn Bryant is guilty, “only Ashlyn” had the opportunity. TRUST ME by Hank Phillippi RyanAn amazing book! I'm going to recommend it to my book club.Whom to trust? Does anyone tell the truth? What is the truth? Mercer Hennessey is sure she knows, but the case of “Baby Boston” shakes the foundations her certainty. It hits too close to her own tragedy. How can she stay objective? Can she? “I’ll have to imagine much of it. In other words, make it up. Some . . . will be near-fiction.”Everyone knows Ashlyn Bryant is guilty, “only Ashlyn” had the opportunity. Her lies about Tasha’s whereabouts confirm her guilt — or do they? I found myself thinking of Desdemona in OTHELLO, lying about her lost handkerchief in an attempt to avoid trouble and thereby dooming herself. The ethical dilemma of pre-judging, is difficult to avoid. What should be done about the judgmental, talkative juror? The deeper Mercer goes in this case, the more troubling it becomes, “down the rabbit hole” and into an Escher print, looking for clarity but finding more puzzles, no clear path. I expected twists, turns, and surprises . . . but couldn’t foresee how they would be delivered. I know I can trust Ryan to, as storyteller Jackie Torrence advised, “bring them home safe,” but trapped and gaslighted in “book jail,” I worried, ate peanut butter sandwiches in solidarity, and wished I could give Mercer some salad and some answers. The dream of strange but familiar-feeling rooms with treasures . . . I’ve had that dream. I was told it represents creative possibilities — appropriate! Trust me, TRUST ME is a captivating and memorable book, not to be missed.
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  • Christine
    January 1, 1970
    Mercer Hennessey is contacted by her former editor to write a book about a sensational local murder trial, in which Ashlyn Bryant has been accused of killing her two-year-old daughter. Mercer accepts because she could use they money and the case interests her. She also hopes working on the book and helping to spotlight Ashlyn's guilt might help her get over her grief for her husband and young daughter who were killed in a car accident a little over a year ago. Mercer's publisher warns her than a Mercer Hennessey is contacted by her former editor to write a book about a sensational local murder trial, in which Ashlyn Bryant has been accused of killing her two-year-old daughter. Mercer accepts because she could use they money and the case interests her. She also hopes working on the book and helping to spotlight Ashlyn's guilt might help her get over her grief for her husband and young daughter who were killed in a car accident a little over a year ago. Mercer's publisher warns her than anything but a guilty verdict for Ashlyn could kill the book deal, but when the verdict comes in, Mercer couldn't never have guessed what would happen next. I enjoy this author's series books, I was excited to read this new standalone novel. The story takes a lot of twists and turns, so much that things begin to get a little convoluted toward the end, but ultimately the last few twists are surprising and satisfying. Both of the main characters, Mercer and Ashlyn, are very complicated characters. Mercer is sympathetic and fragile as she deals with her grief, but smart and determined when investigating the murder of little Tasha Nicole. Ashlyn is clever and often manipulative, but is she a victim of a rough childhood, simply delusional, or is she evil? The murder of Tasha Nicole has many similarities to the real life death of Caylee Anthony and that case is referenced in the story. Mercer doesn't know who to trust and the reader doesn't either, which keeps you guessing as to what is going to happen next. I was thinking the worst at the end, but after all the tragedy and heartbreak throughout the book, it ends on a hopeful note.I received this book at no cost through the courtesy of Forge Books in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Tracy (The Pages In-Between)
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to Hank Phillippi Ryan for sending me an ARC of this book, in exchange of an honest review. All opinions are my own. For people like me, who were/are glued to the t.v. regarding news like Casey Anthony, Andrea Yates, Susan Smith, and the like. This book was very much pulled from the headlines, and I saw a lot of similarities to the above mentioned women and what they've done to their children, or in the case of Casey Anthony, what she got away with.This book was so gripping and fascina Thank you to Hank Phillippi Ryan for sending me an ARC of this book, in exchange of an honest review. All opinions are my own. For people like me, who were/are glued to the t.v. regarding news like Casey Anthony, Andrea Yates, Susan Smith, and the like. This book was very much pulled from the headlines, and I saw a lot of similarities to the above mentioned women and what they've done to their children, or in the case of Casey Anthony, what she got away with.This book was so gripping and fascinating, reading about Ashlyn, I felt like I was losing my mind, her character had me feeling so strung out, I couldn't figure out if I believed her, or if I knew 100% that she was lying. Superb writing. I enjoyed the entire feel of this book, the twists, the turns, the "and the plot thickens" feel to it. I honestly felt like I was reading a documentary/Broadcast. Very cool book, and a really amazing Author. I loved all the characters in the book, I appreciated that in their own way, they were all very much unreliable, in the sense you questioned them, what were they really out for. I really liked Mercer, I feel like she was a genuine character, she was trying to overcome a tragedy, and to focus on something else in her life. Getting caught up in the whirlwind of this case was both helpful and detrimental to her. 
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  • Joan
    January 1, 1970
    Review of Advance Reading CopyFour hundred forty-two days ago, journalist Mercer Hennessey lost her husband and daughter in a tragic accident. She’s still grieving, still struggling with the monumental loss. But she’s offered an assignment she finds difficult to pass up: writing the true inside story of “Baby Boston” as the murder trial of a lifetime spins out in the courtroom. Ashlyn Bryant, the little girl’s mother, stands accused of the heinous crime.Like most people, Mercer is certain Ashlyn Review of Advance Reading CopyFour hundred forty-two days ago, journalist Mercer Hennessey lost her husband and daughter in a tragic accident. She’s still grieving, still struggling with the monumental loss. But she’s offered an assignment she finds difficult to pass up: writing the true inside story of “Baby Boston” as the murder trial of a lifetime spins out in the courtroom. Ashlyn Bryant, the little girl’s mother, stands accused of the heinous crime.Like most people, Mercer is certain Ashlyn is guilty of murdering her daughter. And little Tasha Nicole certainly deserves justice. But Mercer will learn far more than she ever expected when the jury finally returns its verdict and throws her into Ashlyn’s life in an unexpected way.Well-defined, strong characters populate this taut, well-developed, intriguing thriller. The disparity in the way Mercer and Ashlyn deal with the loss of their daughters heightens the narrative’s believability. Mercer is spot-on . . . every reader who has lost a child knows that the day-counting and the lingering blame and the bargains with the universe are all part of trying to understand, of desperately trying to find a way to cope with such an inconceivable loss. The decision to focus on them, to refrain from glossing them over, is a tribute to the author’s insight and her writing skill. With unexpected plot twists, suspense builds as each page is turned. The mounting tension is almost palpable, keeping readers on the edge of their seats as events unfold in this unputdownable, compelling tale in which the truth seeks its own revelation. Highly recommended.
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  • Trude
    January 1, 1970
    Wow...just wow! What a fantastic book. I've been a fan of Hank Phillippi Ryan since I read Prime Time, and I love her Jane Ryland books. This is her first stand-alone and she knocks it out of the park! The subject matter is timely and the writing fast paced with twists and turns around every corner...just when you think you know what is happening Hank changes things up. Who do you trust...what do you trust?Mercer is trying to pull herself out of the darkness after the deaths of her husband and d Wow...just wow! What a fantastic book. I've been a fan of Hank Phillippi Ryan since I read Prime Time, and I love her Jane Ryland books. This is her first stand-alone and she knocks it out of the park! The subject matter is timely and the writing fast paced with twists and turns around every corner...just when you think you know what is happening Hank changes things up. Who do you trust...what do you trust?Mercer is trying to pull herself out of the darkness after the deaths of her husband and daughter in a tragic car accident when her friend and editor talks her into writing a book about the trial of a young woman...Ashlyn...accused of killing her daughter. Trust Me...she's guilty....until she's not and the jury frees her. Now the book Mercer is writing has to change focus...she needs to get Ashlyn's story about what happened. Just when you think you know what happened...you don't. Ashlyn is a master manipulator and Hank masterfully leads us through the maze until the final twist at the end. Trust me...this book is one of the best books of the summer!
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  • Keenan Powell
    January 1, 1970
    Journalist Mercer Hennessey is grieving from the worst tragedy that could befall a wife and mother. Now living alone in the family home, virtually a recluse, she writes a number in the steamed-up bathroom mirror every morning: the number of days since it happened. On day 442, publishing friend Katherine persuades Mercer to write a book about the sensational Baby Boston murder trial. Party girl Ashlyn Bryant stands accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter because the toddler got in the way. Journalist Mercer Hennessey is grieving from the worst tragedy that could befall a wife and mother. Now living alone in the family home, virtually a recluse, she writes a number in the steamed-up bathroom mirror every morning: the number of days since it happened. On day 442, publishing friend Katherine persuades Mercer to write a book about the sensational Baby Boston murder trial. Party girl Ashlyn Bryant stands accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter because the toddler got in the way. This book is psychological thriller at its best. Riveting. Suspenseful. A morphing reality. An exploration of the shadowy canons of our mental grasp on reality and those dark places where the monsters hide. The author masterfully weaves three timelines so that these three versions of reality, yours, mine and the truth, become so blended, the smallest shifts threaten Mercer Hennessy's sanity.Five stars. This book should be taught in creative writing courses.
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  • Elisabeth Elo
    January 1, 1970
    Hank Phillippi Ryan's first standalone is definitely a winner. It's the story of a journalist grieving for her dead child and a woman recently found innocent (but is she really?) of murdering her child who live together in the same house for two weeks so they can collaborate on a true-crime book about the child's mysterious death and the woman's very incompetent murder trial. The premise is cool and original, and the execution lives up to the hype the book's been receiving. The plot progresses s Hank Phillippi Ryan's first standalone is definitely a winner. It's the story of a journalist grieving for her dead child and a woman recently found innocent (but is she really?) of murdering her child who live together in the same house for two weeks so they can collaborate on a true-crime book about the child's mysterious death and the woman's very incompetent murder trial. The premise is cool and original, and the execution lives up to the hype the book's been receiving. The plot progresses step by step in a really creepy way so that you feel like you're sinking into a quicksand of doubt and possibilities. The main character, journalist Mercer, is totally believable and wonderfully “relatable," as Ryan's leading ladies always are. A big part of the pleasure of the book is hanging out with Mercer and learning some of the tricks of the journalist's trade. She’s the kind of character you wish could be your best friend. Oh, and the writing is terrific, with just the right amount of sensory detail to make you feel like you're there without it weighing down the plot. Loved it!
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  • Debbie Hagedorn
    January 1, 1970
    Trust me…..what is your gut reaction when someone says, “Trust me”? If it’s a politician, I’m sure you’re skeptical. If it’s your spouse, you probably feel comforted. If it’s an acquitted child murderer…..now, that’s a different reaction. Those two words crop up numerous times in this scintillating story, always in a different context and with a very different visceral reaction for the reader. But you can trust me, this is a novel you don’t want to miss. From the opening scenes, Mercer Hennessey Trust me…..what is your gut reaction when someone says, “Trust me”? If it’s a politician, I’m sure you’re skeptical. If it’s your spouse, you probably feel comforted. If it’s an acquitted child murderer…..now, that’s a different reaction. Those two words crop up numerous times in this scintillating story, always in a different context and with a very different visceral reaction for the reader. But you can trust me, this is a novel you don’t want to miss. From the opening scenes, Mercer Hennessey is living in a nightmare. Over a year ago, her husband and young daughter died in an accident and she cannot move on with her life as it is now. She is a writer who does not write, except for the vivid scenarios in her head, some that torture her and some that may possibly help keep her sane. But then the offer of work comes from Mercer’s former editor. Katherine wants Mercer to write the true crime book of the year, all about the trial and conviction of Ashlyn Bryant, on trial for the brutal murder of her small daughter, Tasha Nicole. Mercer believes the universe is giving her the opportunity to get justice for little Tasha and at the same time, possibly help herself heal from the loss of her own daughter. Katherine asks her to “trust me”. Soon, there are many other people vying for Mercer’s trust – police officers, Ashlyn’s family, other reporters, and most of all, Ashlyn herself. How will Mercer deal with the variety of trust issues presented? Will there ever be justice for little Tasha Nicole? Will justice for Tasha be enough for Mercer to put her own daughter to rest?This first person narrative draws the reader in quickly. You will truly feel Mercer’s motivations, her confusion, and follow her thoughts as she tries to make sense of a horrendous murder. This is a rousing thrill-ride of a story, with surprises at every turn. As you read, you will really believe you know where the story is heading, but wait. Truth? Half-truth? Lies? You will find yourself guessing to the very final chapter. Who is trustworthy? Who is lying, and what are they lying about? Hank Phillippi Ryan creates a reality so engrossing you won’t know where the truth ends and the lies begin. Trust me, read this novel. You won’t be disappointed.
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  • Robyn
    January 1, 1970
    If I could give this book 100+ stars I would! Trust Me grabbed me from beginning to end. This book had everything: suspense, murder, twists and turns, intrigue, and I couldn't put it down. Mercer is a journalist who is barely getting on with her life after an accident took her husband and daughter from her. She reluctantly accepts an offer to write a novel about the upcoming trial of an accused murderer. Life as she knew it will never be the same, and when it gets turned upside down, she starts If I could give this book 100+ stars I would! Trust Me grabbed me from beginning to end. This book had everything: suspense, murder, twists and turns, intrigue, and I couldn't put it down. Mercer is a journalist who is barely getting on with her life after an accident took her husband and daughter from her. She reluctantly accepts an offer to write a novel about the upcoming trial of an accused murderer. Life as she knew it will never be the same, and when it gets turned upside down, she starts questioning herself, and everyone around her. I LOVED this book, and Hank Phillippi Ryan is a phenomenal author! Trust Me is in my top 10 favorite books of all time, and I highly recommend everyone read this book!
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  • Robin
    January 1, 1970
    I want everyone to know that it took *all* of my reading willpower not to skip ahead in this book. The story was so serpentine and tense that I could hardly stand the suspense. I hate it when that happens. OK, not really. I loved it. Very well done psychological thriller that to me was a cross between GONE GIRL and THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW (A. J. Finn). I took off 1/2 star as I started getting a little confused and off-balance, but then maybe that was the author's goal. I also felt it got a littl I want everyone to know that it took *all* of my reading willpower not to skip ahead in this book. The story was so serpentine and tense that I could hardly stand the suspense. I hate it when that happens. OK, not really. I loved it. Very well done psychological thriller that to me was a cross between GONE GIRL and THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW (A. J. Finn). I took off 1/2 star as I started getting a little confused and off-balance, but then maybe that was the author's goal. I also felt it got a little too long in parts, but other than that it's a solid 4.5 star psychological thriller.Thanks to the publisher for the advance reading copy.
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  • Linda grimes
    January 1, 1970
    Trust Me is one of the best psychological thrillers I have ever read - and I have read hundreds. You are easily sucked into the story of a woman accused of killing her child. Did she or didn't she? You won't know until the last pages, and you will find your opinion of her guilt change several times during the story. Read this book when you have some free time; otherwise you might play hooky, burn your dinner or lose a whole night of sleep. You won't be able to put this book down. Great book!
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  • Alison
    January 1, 1970
    Trust Me was an enthralling read, and I was hooked from the very beginning. It is the first book I’ve read by Hank Phillipi Ryan. I loved the element of the ripped from the headlines murder trial in part one of Trust Me, and found myself holding my breath waiting for the verdict. Trust Me will have you questioning the difference between fiction and reality as well as who can really be trusted. I received an ARC through a giveaway from Goodreads. Thank you to Goodreads for the opportunity to read Trust Me was an enthralling read, and I was hooked from the very beginning. It is the first book I’ve read by Hank Phillipi Ryan. I loved the element of the ripped from the headlines murder trial in part one of Trust Me, and found myself holding my breath waiting for the verdict. Trust Me will have you questioning the difference between fiction and reality as well as who can really be trusted. I received an ARC through a giveaway from Goodreads. Thank you to Goodreads for the opportunity to read this book and provide an honest review.
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  • Barbara
    January 1, 1970
    This story was a complete surprise! Just when I thought it was one thing, it became another. Plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing. This was my first by author Hank Phillippi Ryan and I am sure I'll be back for more. The main character, a journalist, is asked by her editor to write the story of the mother on trial for killing her toddler and leaving her body on a Boston Harbor Island, but what happens to the story if she's found not guilty? Sort of a cross between the Casey Anthony sto This story was a complete surprise! Just when I thought it was one thing, it became another. Plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing. This was my first by author Hank Phillippi Ryan and I am sure I'll be back for more. The main character, a journalist, is asked by her editor to write the story of the mother on trial for killing her toddler and leaving her body on a Boston Harbor Island, but what happens to the story if she's found not guilty? Sort of a cross between the Casey Anthony story and the Baby Doe case in Massachusetts.
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  • Robin
    January 1, 1970
    Timely, suspenseful, well crafted – all true, and irrelevant, as this novel is impossible to put down, so as you read you may simply be inhaling Ryan’s words. It’s going back into the story that gets you really thinking. Ryan frequently uses her extensive professional background as an investigative reporter to good advantage in her fiction, giving her characters, journalists all, a real ring of truth. It adds to the street cred of her novels. You can believe what she’s saying, because she knows Timely, suspenseful, well crafted – all true, and irrelevant, as this novel is impossible to put down, so as you read you may simply be inhaling Ryan’s words. It’s going back into the story that gets you really thinking. Ryan frequently uses her extensive professional background as an investigative reporter to good advantage in her fiction, giving her characters, journalists all, a real ring of truth. It adds to the street cred of her novels. You can believe what she’s saying, because she knows what she’s talking about.That said, she possesses another skill, one that’s not a mere transcription of her profession, and that’s a talent for storytelling. Without that particular gift, no novel lifts off the ground. This one has a tremendously addictive hook – Ryan’s central character, Mercer, is grieving the deaths of her daughter and husband. She’s so consumed with her grief she’s done little else but count the days since they left her side, memorializing them each day in the fog of her bathroom mirror by a number.She’s pulled away from her grieving reluctantly by an old colleague who asks her to cover the trial of a woman accused of killing her toddler daughter, or “Baby Boston” as the child is known in the press. The child was roughly the same age as Mercer’s own daughter and the rage she feels toward the mother who threw away what she wishes every day she could have again is unmitigated. She agrees, and a crew arrives to install a live feed from the courtroom so she can watch the trial and write as she goes. The book is under a very tight deadline.As Mercer watches and writes, she gets herself inside the heads of the “characters” in the Baby Boston drama – the parents of the accused and the accused herself. As she writes, the reader is allowed to read what she’s written each day and it’s incredibly believable, fitting the facts as she “knows” them from research and observation.As the book is told in first person, your reliable or unreliable source for the “truth” is Mercer herself. Her reactions, as are the reactions of any human being, are those filtered through the lens of her experience, in this case, the grief she can’t escape.The verdict comes about half way through the story, and the book is then turned upside down as Mercer is forced to deal, one on one, with the accused killer in order to finish her book. Meeting the woman, Mercer’s ideas of “truth” begin to change. What is true? The facts she can research, or is it the story the young mother, now a part of Mercer’s book contract, spins out as her own version of the truth?Are facts so malleable? How about our interpretation of them? Interpretation is certainly malleable and we are front and center with Mercer as she tries to figure out who or what to trust and believe. Ryan is wrapping these profound thoughts in the comfortable clothing of a great story, but after I finished the book I could not stop thinking about it. Could I be so easily manipulated? Was Mercer? This is a wonderful novel, the best combination of thoughtful storytelling and unforgettable characters. Mercer will stay in your heart.
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  • Carol
    January 1, 1970
    Ok, who do we believe or should I say, how much of what is said should be believed?Mercer has lost her husband and child in a car accident. Now, after 450+ days of mourning, she is asked to write a book about a woman charged with murdering her child. Mercer so wants Ashlyn to be guilty so her book to be is slanted that way leading up to the trial.The trial is only the first half of the book, or so. Do we believe Ashlyn who prides herself on the ability to fake the truth or..... Good story.Thanks Ok, who do we believe or should I say, how much of what is said should be believed?Mercer has lost her husband and child in a car accident. Now, after 450+ days of mourning, she is asked to write a book about a woman charged with murdering her child. Mercer so wants Ashlyn to be guilty so her book to be is slanted that way leading up to the trial.The trial is only the first half of the book, or so. Do we believe Ashlyn who prides herself on the ability to fake the truth or..... Good story.Thanks, NetGalley for the advance read in exchange for an honest opinion.
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  • Barbara Lack
    January 1, 1970
    This was a mind bender of a book. This book is about lies and different versions of the truth. It was incredibly sad at times. It’s not a book that has any laughs in it. It’s twisty and turny. I loved the way the ending tied everything up. I was riveted from the first page. Ryam’s Writing is incredible. I truly enjoyed this book! I received an advance review copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Norma Huss
    January 1, 1970
    Trust Me is beautifully written, totally engrossing, and keeps the reader a bit unsettled. (At least, this reader.) How will it end? Is there a "happy ever after" or a collapse into despair? Hank Phillippi Ryan weaves a narrative, completely in one woman's viewpoint, that shows the push and pull between two women in a search for the real truth. Or, the truth that "could be" true. It's a psychological battle. It may be inevitable that one will win and the other loose it all. But, which one?
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  • Woody
    January 1, 1970
    This was a slow read. The first section was such a slog I almost gave up. I think they could have ditched the entire first section, taken the really relevant bits and dropped them in the second section with dialogue and maybe a flashback or two. One of the main characters is so over-the-top in words and deeds, I was beginning to think the narrator was hallucinating this entire story. Which would have been a better ending.
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  • Lisa Hudson
    January 1, 1970
    PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER!What is TRUTH? How do you KNOW it’s the truth? Is it because people tell you it’s the truth? Is it because you “trust your gut”? Do you believe it if the facts prove it? What if the facts have been manipulated? Trust Me explores these questions and so many more as author Hank Ryan Phillipi Ryan leads readers through a fantastic standalone psychological thriller. Her writing is so descriptive that you become a character in the story. Her characters are complex. Her setting PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER!What is TRUTH? How do you KNOW it’s the truth? Is it because people tell you it’s the truth? Is it because you “trust your gut”? Do you believe it if the facts prove it? What if the facts have been manipulated? Trust Me explores these questions and so many more as author Hank Ryan Phillipi Ryan leads readers through a fantastic standalone psychological thriller. Her writing is so descriptive that you become a character in the story. Her characters are complex. Her setting is so comfortable that you feel you are sitting in the rooms with the characters, observing and listening to their conversations. Her plot is precise and execution is perfect! The psychological warfare (that is what it truly is!) over what is THE TRUTH between the two main characters is so intense that you will find yourself continually seeking THE TRUTH. I won an ARC copy of this book on Goodreads. The opinions expressed here are completely my own and without influence.
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  • Martha Francescato
    January 1, 1970
    Trust Me, Hank Phillippi Ryan's standalone novel, does stand alone, like a brilliant, genuine gem in the midst of many pretentious fakes, and its light beckons us into its well-laid-out labyrinth. It pulls us in from the very beginning, and we are instantly mesmerized by the development of this story. At first I asked, what? No Charlotte McNally? No Jane Ryland? I was intrigued by this new venue. Then, I heard Hank Phillippi Ryan calling me and telling me: Trust me. And I am glad I did. You will Trust Me, Hank Phillippi Ryan's standalone novel, does stand alone, like a brilliant, genuine gem in the midst of many pretentious fakes, and its light beckons us into its well-laid-out labyrinth. It pulls us in from the very beginning, and we are instantly mesmerized by the development of this story. At first I asked, what? No Charlotte McNally? No Jane Ryland? I was intrigued by this new venue. Then, I heard Hank Phillippi Ryan calling me and telling me: Trust me. And I am glad I did. You will love this novel too. Trust me!Hank Phillippi Ryan is writing a book, Trust Me, about a reporter, Mercer Hennessey, who is also writing a book about another woman, Ashlyn Bryant, on trial for murder. Mercer is the narrator of Trust Me. Is she reliable or unreliable? As we read on and get to know her better, we start having doubts and many questions. Can Mercer approach her subject impartially? What is happening? Can we believe Ashlyn Bryant's account? Whose “truth” are we asked to believe? As we follow the developments closely, we realize that it is almost impossible to trust any one of the characters of the stories that are being told. They change constantly and abruptly. And we are told “trust me” repeatedly by almost all the characters, so much so that it starts to make us wonder what it means and how we should react to it. It also makes us anxious about what we’ll keep finding in this suspenseful setting and the monsters it conjures.Mercer had initially felt doubts about writing her book, perhaps because the subject was too close to home. She was told that it would become a best seller, and that she would make lots of money, but it was the reference to a previous very successful book that motivated her even further. When Truman Capote began writing professionally, he theorized that journalism and creative writing could come together in a form that he called the “nonfiction novel.” The subject had to be right, however; with journalism underpinning such a novel, the pitfall was that it could quickly date itself. Crime, he decided, could be the perfect vehicle. And he added, “Reporting can be made as interesting as fiction, and done as artistically.” Truman Capote's In Cold Blood is widely considered to be the first book in the true crime genre. With Trust Me, Hank Phillippi Ryan takes this genre to a new, fascinating, and daring level -– “fictionally real.”We have reached the end of the novel. But is this really “the end”? The end of this book, or the end of the possible truths? We are also reminded that nobody can or should go back to the past. It’s over. Nobody in this book will ever be the same. And we should never place our trust and our complete confidence in the creator or in her characters. The only words that come to my mind now and that apply perfectly to this book are "Oh! what a tangled web we weave / When first we practise to deceive" by Sir Walter Scott, from his 1808 poem “Marmion.” He said it best. He may have seen me reading Trust Me and sent me the quote to prompt me on how to interpret this psychological thriller. And he warned me that I would be spellbound. I am indeed enthralled. Trust Me is an unparalleled feat in Hank Phillippi Ryan’s career as a writer. You will love it too. Trust me!
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