Wall of Silence
Her children have a deadly secret. Can she uncover it before the police do?Melissa Byatt’s life in Forest Grove seems as perfect as can be: a doting husband, three loving children and a beautiful house in a close-knit community. But appearances can be deceiving.One evening, Melissa arrives home to the unimaginable: her husband lies stabbed on the kitchen floor, their children standing calmly around him…With horror, she realises that one of them is to blame. But which one? And why would they attack their own father?Her loyalties torn, in a split second she decides to protect her children at all costs—even if that means lying to the police. But when someone in the neighbourhood claims to know more than they should, Melissa discovers that some secrets are beyond her control…Can she find out the truth of what happened before the rumours spread? And can the family unite to escape the spotlight of scandal—or are none of them as innocent as Melissa insists?

Wall of Silence Details

TitleWall of Silence
Author
ReleaseApr 1st, 2020
PublisherLake Union Publishing
ISBN-139781542017091
Rating
GenreFiction, Mystery, Thriller

Wall of Silence Review

  • Christi M
    January 1, 1970
    Wall of Silence opens with the inner thoughts of the person who has stabbed Patrick Byatt, the husband and father of the family. It is automatically clear that one of the three children is responsible for it and there is a cover-up being formed, not to mention overall panic. Soon, Melissa comes home from a bike-ride to find her husband bleeding on the kitchen floor. The children provide some responses to her questions on what happened, but being their mother it doesnt take her too long to Wall of Silence opens with the inner thoughts of the person who has stabbed Patrick Byatt, the husband and father of the family. It is automatically clear that one of the three children is responsible for it and there is a cover-up being formed, not to mention overall panic. Soon, Melissa comes home from a bike-ride to find her husband bleeding on the kitchen floor. The children provide some responses to her questions on what happened, but being their mother it doesn’t take her too long to realize the answers aren’t completely truthful.As you read, the author gives you a very well-rounded view of what a gossipy small town neighborhood might be like. The Byatt’s live in a village called Forest Grove labeled “Utopia of the Woods,” where everything is seemingly perfect and serene. That is except for the Byatt’s, who have had their share of tragedies due to the death of one of their sons several years prior – Joel – and one involving Melissa’s mother.The neighbors and the village play a decent-sized role within the story as well. Sprinkled through-out the book are “Forest Grove Facebook Chit Chat Group” chapters, where we read the messages being sent in real-time by their neighbors and what they are relaying to each other in regards to the events and what they think about them. In these text/chat messages we get a more accurate sense of their inner feelings and prejudices that social media tends to bring out of some. Sniping, conjectures, rumor-starting….One of the main factors that will most likely determine whether or not you fully invest into this story is whether you can related to the style of the narrative and overall storytelling. It has a different type of presentation than other thrillers especially with the ‘chit-chat’ group chapters. It wasn’t quite my style, but that is just me and I feel confident this will work for others.Rating: 3.5 stars
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  • Alayne Emmett
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed this book. It had all the elements I love except too many characters which confused me at times. I loved the way this book kept me guessing at who did the murder and the ending surprised me.
  • Sarah
    January 1, 1970
    For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/...Does a perfect family exist? Well, thats the image that the residents of Forest Grove have of the Byatt family. Yet, after a tragic event, cracks rapidly start appearing, proving that nothing is what it seems in this very close-knit community.For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/... For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/...Does a perfect family exist? Well, that’s the image that the residents of Forest Grove have of the Byatt family. Yet, after a tragic event, cracks rapidly start appearing, proving that nothing is what it seems in this very close-knit community.For my full review, visit me at https://mrsbrownsbooks.wordpress.com/...
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  • RedRedtheycallmeRed
    January 1, 1970
    Melissa comes home to find her husband stabbed, all signs point to one of her children being responsible, and she decides to protect them. Understandable, but she took such a passive approach that it seemed unbelievable. She confronts the kids (who are 15 year old boy/girl twins and their 10 year old sister) and basically they tell her they just can't talk about it. So Melissa's response is basically, "OK, I guess they need some space." WHO REACTS THAT WAY?!?! Melissa was happy in her marriage, Melissa comes home to find her husband stabbed, all signs point to one of her children being responsible, and she decides to protect them. Understandable, but she took such a passive approach that it seemed unbelievable. She confronts the kids (who are 15 year old boy/girl twins and their 10 year old sister) and basically they tell her they just can't talk about it. So Melissa's response is basically, "OK, I guess they need some space." WHO REACTS THAT WAY?!?! Melissa was happy in her marriage, in love with her husband, so why would she not be a little more inclined to put some pressure on her kids? I was so frustrated with her through almost the entire book. Especially after more was revealed, is anyone really that clueless? If you live in a small town where there are orgies going on at the local pub, wouldn't everyone have at least heard some rumors?Spread throughout the book are chapters where locals take to Facebook to gossip about what's going on. I've never had a Facebook account, but it seems about as toxic as I imagined.Near the end, when Melissa finally located her spine, a lot happened all at once. I'm still left with questions. Was that really the whole story of what happened with Melissa's mother? What about what happened to Caitlin? Shouldn't there have been some consequences for that (or at least some intensive therapy)?
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  • Kerry
    January 1, 1970
    WALL OF SILENCE is wild, a who-dun-it rollercoaster. The story launches with a bang with one of the most original openings Ive read. Tracy Buchanan has crafted a novel where the plot literally thickens with every page turned and new secrets simmer as the reader is pulled deeper into her cast of characters web of lies and silence. I was captivated from page one, entertained throughout, and shocked over the final reveal. Loved it! WALL OF SILENCE is wild, a “who-dun-it” rollercoaster. The story launches with a bang with one of the most original openings I’ve read. Tracy Buchanan has crafted a novel where the plot literally thickens with every page turned and new secrets simmer as the reader is pulled deeper into her cast of character’s web of lies and silence. I was captivated from page one, entertained throughout, and shocked over the final reveal. Loved it!
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  • Christy
    January 1, 1970
    The plot was very promising, and Melissa was a relatable character. Her anxiety and her indecision about how to get the truth from her children was well written. So was her love for her children and her desire to protect them.I thought how the backstory was woven into the main narrative was very well done. It was easy to follow and it wasnt drug out for too long; I had enough time to wonder what had happened in Melissas past, but it didnt take too long to find out.There were several things that The plot was very promising, and Melissa was a relatable character. Her anxiety and her indecision about how to get the truth from her children was well written. So was her love for her children and her desire to protect them.I thought how the backstory was woven into the main narrative was very well done. It was easy to follow and it wasn’t drug out for too long; I had enough time to wonder what had happened in Melissa’s past, but it didn’t take too long to find out.There were several things that didn’t track for me, which is why 3 stars.1. If the twins always knew their father had killed their brother Joel, how had they had such a loving and happy relationship for the last 11 years?2. If Ryan and Daphne knew that Lily was really Patrick’s child, why did they allow her and Lewis to date? They were half siblings and didn’t know it. That could have been disastrous, to say the least.3. The small and close knit community setting doesn’t jive with Melissa not knowing of her husband’s not-so-secret serial cheater behavior. 4. The kids telling their grandad all. They knew he and their grandma helped to cover up Joel’s death. Why would they trust him and not their mom?
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  • PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
    January 1, 1970
    When Melissas husband Patrick is stabbed, she knows one of her three children is to blame. Was the culprit one of her fifteen-year-old twins Lilly or Lewis? Could their younger sister Grace be responsible? On the outside, the family seems so perfect. But is any family? Patricks parents are oh so supportive. Oppressively so. Neighbors gossip online with theories and innuendo while Patrick lays in a coma. One child confesses in a diary. Which child?WALL OF SILENCE is a wild ride. Red herrings When Melissa’s husband Patrick is stabbed, she knows one of her three children is to blame. Was the culprit one of her fifteen-year-old twins Lilly or Lewis? Could their younger sister Grace be responsible? On the outside, the family seems so perfect. But is any family? Patrick’s parents are oh so supportive. Oppressively so. Neighbors gossip online with theories and innuendo while Patrick lays in a coma. One child confesses in a diary. Which child?WALL OF SILENCE is a wild ride. Red herrings galore. Everyone had secrets. Everyone in the family and in the village. And everyone lied. Some lies to save face can’t really hurt, unless those lies cause someone to do something potentially deadly.I guessed the Who in the whodunnit incorrectly, although the Why was much more important. WALL OF SILENCE is a twisty, turny journey from stabbing to what the heck, oh that makes perfect sense.
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  • Melinda
    January 1, 1970
    Holy crap. No, let me rephrase that: Holy shit. Stop whatever youre doing and read this novel. Immediately. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, just buy this and read it. Its amazing.I dont give many 5 star reviews. But this one grabbed me from the blurb and didnt let me go. Its character driven (a must for me) and all the characters are incredibly well developed. At the end of it, I was a little tearful because I now know these people. Im a part of them. I thought the authors use of Facebook Holy crap. No, let me rephrase that: Holy shit. Stop whatever you’re doing and read this novel. Immediately. Do not pass go, do not collect $200, just buy this and read it. It’s amazing.I don’t give many 5 star reviews. But this one grabbed me from the blurb and didn’t let me go. It’s character driven (a must for me) and all the characters are incredibly well developed. At the end of it, I was a little tearful because I now know these people. I’m a part of them. I thought the author’s use of Facebook posts was really cleverly done as well. I liked how it broke up some of the drama but still moved the plot forward. And I loved that I didn’t quite know who did it until a few pages before the reveal. I went back and forth between several different suspects and every time I was convinced I knew, I was proven wrong or rendered uncertain again within a few pages. I’m so excited to have stumbled across an author who clearly knows her craft well. I’ll be reading more of her work for sure. Highly recommend this one.
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  • Chal
    January 1, 1970
    Intriguing & fast pacedBeing a lover of trees, I found the setting of this novel to be calming and peaceful yet eery and dark all at once, which captures the spirit of a forest to me.This was well written. The story moved along quickly, the characters had strong development, and the author also provided enough juicy foreshadowing and insights to keep a reader hanging on.I would read more from this author.
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  • Louise Mullins
    January 1, 1970
    I hadn't read any of Buchanan's books before this one but was gripped from the very first page to the last, and look forward to reading her future novels. Part literary in that it delves into the individual characters lives: their personalities, beliefs, desires, fears, motivations, and their relation to each other, part psychological as it also offers a plausibly described explanation of familial structure. The plot is so authentic I kept forgetting I was reading a novel. This is a work of I hadn't read any of Buchanan's books before this one but was gripped from the very first page to the last, and look forward to reading her future novels. Part literary in that it delves into the individual characters lives: their personalities, beliefs, desires, fears, motivations, and their relation to each other, part psychological as it also offers a plausibly described explanation of familial structure. The plot is so authentic I kept forgetting I was reading a novel. This is a work of excellent fiction that reminded me in parts of Jo Spain's Dirty Little Secrets. Original, compelling, and I had absolutely no idea who done it or why until it was revealed. This was a definite five star read for me!
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  • Suzanne Eisenhauer
    January 1, 1970
    Wow, am I the only person who really didn't like this book? In fact, I was surprised I even finished it, given that I put it down time and again after becoming frustrated with the lead character. Here's the deal, when you live in a tiny insular Peyton Place, where everyone knows everyone else's business, how in the world can you remain ignorant to practically everything that goes on around you -- especially when it pertains to your own family? I mean, there's even a Facebook "chit chat" page Wow, am I the only person who really didn't like this book? In fact, I was surprised I even finished it, given that I put it down time and again after becoming frustrated with the lead character. Here's the deal, when you live in a tiny insular Peyton Place, where everyone knows everyone else's business, how in the world can you remain ignorant to practically everything that goes on around you -- especially when it pertains to your own family? I mean, there's even a Facebook "chit chat" page where all the trolls convene to judge others and pass along misleading gossip. How do you allow yourself to be strong-armed and bullied by your in-laws, see them do things you don't agree with, hurt people you know/love and then forgive them instantly because "they're just trying to help?" Help who? Themselves?The character of Melissa left me frustrated enough to scream. She was naive, obtuse, complicit, insecure, unstable, indecisive, and chaotic. It was a mess to be inside her head. While she wiled away much of the book mired in her own memories, imaginings, and indecision, she blithely allowed her family to do whatever the hell they wanted. And by the way, most of the sh*t that went down in this book would land a person in jail so please tell me the logic in many of the characters' decision-making? And in the end, it was all for what?? The moral to this and any story, the truth will always come out.
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  • Darinda
    January 1, 1970
    Melissa returns home one evening to find her husband stabbed and her three children standing around him. She soon realizes her kids have something to do with the stabbing, but none of them are telling her what happened. Melissa's instincts are to protect her children, but she needs to know what happened to her husband. A gripping domestic suspense novel. Melissa wants to protect her three kids - 15-year-old twins Lewis and Lilly and 10-year-old Grace. She also wants to know what happened between Melissa returns home one evening to find her husband stabbed and her three children standing around him. She soon realizes her kids have something to do with the stabbing, but none of them are telling her what happened. Melissa's instincts are to protect her children, but she needs to know what happened to her husband. A gripping domestic suspense novel. Melissa wants to protect her three kids - 15-year-old twins Lewis and Lilly and 10-year-old Grace. She also wants to know what happened between them and her husband. The kids won't tell her and her husband can't. As the mystery of what happened unravels, a lot of family drama plays out. The appearance of a perfect family was all a facade, and everyone was keeping secrets. My main fault with this novel was Melissa. While I appreciate her wanting to protect her family, she was incredibly dense and naive. Still, I was entertained by this psychological thriller.
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  • Eloise Smith
    January 1, 1970
    A great read with some unexpected twists. As soon as I read the first couple of chapters of this book, I was drawn in. For a while it was quite hard to work out why what had happened had happened, but after a few careful clues - I had an idea, yet there were further twists I did not expect. I thought including the Facebook group was clever and very realistic in todays modern world with all the community groups. I sometimes found it hard to remember everyones names as there are quite a few A great read with some unexpected twists. As soon as I read the first couple of chapters of this book, I was drawn in. For a while it was quite hard to work out why what had happened had happened, but after a few careful clues - I had an idea, yet there were further twists I did not expect. I thought including the Facebook group was clever and very realistic in today’s modern world with all the community groups. I sometimes found it hard to remember everyone’s names as there are quite a few mentioned and I’d find myself trying to think back to who that person was, however this did not affect how much I enjoyed this book. I personally feel that some aspects of the story (no spoilers!) left some unanswered questions and could have been explained a little more, but overall an excellent read I finished in two sittings.This is my first book by Tracy Buchanan but definitely not my last!
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  • Sandra Knapp
    January 1, 1970
    Very good!The synopsis on this book was a real tease. It hooked me. I just had to know what it was about. Wow, talk about a surprise ending!I really enjoyed this story, from start to finish. I was drawn in from page 1, and never let go to the very end. What is going on here, and why are all of the children refusing to say anything to anyone about what happened to their Father. How was he injured, to the point of near death? The story moved right along at a good pace, adding more and more mystery Very good!The synopsis on this book was a real tease. It hooked me. I just had to know what it was about. Wow, talk about a surprise ending!I really enjoyed this story, from start to finish. I was drawn in from page 1, and never let go to the very end. What is going on here, and why are all of the children refusing to say anything to anyone about what happened to their Father. How was he injured, to the point of near death? The story moved right along at a good pace, adding more and more mystery as it went along. Alluding to things in the past but never making it totally clear what actually went on. Finally the big reveal, and it was a shocker. Excellent character development. I really felt for these children and their Mother. And I very much recommend this book. It was a really good read from start to finish.
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  • Mrs V
    January 1, 1970
    A nasty dispiriting read.This is only the second time that I have only given a 1 star rating as I try to see something good in all books that I choose to read and strangely enough, this book is just like "What You Did" by Claire McGowan which had my first 1 star rating! The storylines are so similar that it makes me wonder....hmm.Yet again the premise of the book features a happily married woman with children married to a man with the morals of a tomcat, who has a 'best friend' who really isn't A nasty dispiriting read.This is only the second time that I have only given a 1 star rating as I try to see something good in all books that I choose to read and strangely enough, this book is just like "What You Did" by Claire McGowan which had my first 1 star rating! The storylines are so similar that it makes me wonder....hmm.Yet again the premise of the book features a happily married woman with children married to a man with the morals of a tomcat, who has a 'best friend' who really isn't and is living amongst a mostly amoral community. The husband ends up in a coma too. By the time I was way less than half way through I could see how it was all going turn out but I persevered in the vain hope that it would differ........I eventually gave up reading such uninspiring drivel which is first for me!!I'm sure that the ending will be that mother and children live happily ever after with old love and the half sister, I could be wrong but I really don't care.I know that the real world isn't perfect but I find it strange that a decent person can find enjoyment in such a disturbing storyline. Yet, according to the reviews some people really enjoyed it 🤔 I wonder why?I got this book free via prime in advance of publication, I would have been gutted to have paid good money for it.My recommendation is to avoid this and look at the myriad of good reads available of all genres on Amazon.
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  • Diana Yerkess
    January 1, 1970
    This was my March free book choice from Amazon Prime and wow, what a great one.Mainly strong characters and a plot that kept me guessing (usually wrongly) till right at the end.A bit of Stepford wives, Agatha Christie mixed up in a modern day tragedy all around a real page turning mystery.Will definitely be reading more from Tracy Buchanan (this was my first)9/10
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  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    The perfect family in the perfect town is imploded when the husband is found stabbed. Controlling grandparents, silent children and gossiping neighbors abound. As the husband lies in a coma, the wife begins to learn the many secrets kept by the town and her own family.
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  • Laura Steinert
    January 1, 1970
    Absolutely not the right author for me. Backstories with endless details; then backstories for the backstories. Long Facebook "chats" of the nastiest sorts. A thin story buried under heaps of detail and every detail beaten to death, expanded upon and explained multiple times. Perhaps a book for people with nothing to do. Reading level appropriate for young teens, but the story content s not appropriate for teens at all.
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  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    Great book!! Lots of twists and truly could not put it down!!!!
  • Dee
    January 1, 1970
    Good read; I was pulled into the overall backdrop of small town gossip with snippets of same gossip via the community FB posts, giving a more realistic feel of just how messy people in these communities can really be.Parts of the book did drag a bit, and although it seemed as though the revelations came crashing down all at once in almost a forced/rushed way, it was still enjoyable, sad and mind-blowing.
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  • Patti
    January 1, 1970
    Loved this bookI found that I could hardly put this book down. I probably would have read it in one setting if "real life" didn't come into play. I have read other books by this author but this is by far my favorite. I don't give many 5 star ratings but felt this book truly deserves it.
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  • Mrs A. J. Turbfield
    January 1, 1970
    A bit convoluted but brilliantly finished. A differentPace o qhat I normally read, but the ending made up for the slower pace. Mot sure of I will reaf more by this author.
  • Emma Taylor
    January 1, 1970
    BrilliantAbsolutely loved this book! I read it in 2 days and now I'm gutted I have finished it. Best book I have read for a while.
  • BestBooksy Reviews
    January 1, 1970
    The residents of Forest Grove think that the Byatt family is perfect. Yet, like with everything in life, nothing is it seems. After a tragic event, cracks begin to appear unleashing chaos within this close-knit community.The setting of residents living on the edge of the forest is idyllic and skilfully depicted by the author Tracy Buchanan in a way that you can vividly see and feel this village. It is a sort of oasis. However, the darker side of this village community is the Facebook Group, The residents of Forest Grove think that the Byatt family is perfect. Yet, like with everything in life, nothing is it seems. After a tragic event, cracks begin to appear unleashing chaos within this close-knit community.The setting of residents living on the edge of the forest is idyllic and skilfully depicted by the author Tracy Buchanan in a way that you can vividly see and feel this village. It is a sort of oasis. However, the darker side of this village community is the Facebook Group, where people’s true natures are revealed and accurately depict the sad state of our modern society. Yes, even a small communal village cannot escape the slander and the hurtful opinions of social media comments. Wall of Silence starts off a bit slow, with many characters introduced into the fray and meddling in the lives of the Byatt family. But wow! Once it gets going and you are familiar with all the characters (there is a vast number of them) and their connection to Melissa and her family, you won’t be able to glance away. There were many stages in Wall of Silence that we thought that we cracked the way the story is going to pan out, but boy were we mistaken. The author kept the twists coming thick and fast, making this outstanding plot unsolvable.A unique setting, combined with an intriguing mystery, ensures an enjoyable read that you will struggle to put down. You will be torn by the inner struggle that Melissa faces between knowing the truth and protecting her family. Okay, enough, we don’t want to give too much away because you have to read this one!We loved Buchanan’s writing style and can’t wait for her next book. BestBooksy awards Wall of Silence a well-deserved five stars!
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  • J.M. Powers
    January 1, 1970
    Wall of Silence opens with the point of view of a child who stabbed a family member ... the father, Patrick. All three siblings stick together and refuse to tell who did it. The family seemed perfect, and everyone in the community is stunned at this awful event. Melissa, the mother of the children is the one who came upon her husband surrounded by the children. Her devotion to Patrick and her children brings her to the brink of despair when the police deem it an attempted murder.This book kept Wall of Silence opens with the point of view of a child who stabbed a family member ... the father, Patrick. All three siblings stick together and refuse to tell who did it. The family seemed perfect, and everyone in the community is stunned at this awful event. Melissa, the mother of the children is the one who came upon her husband surrounded by the children. Her devotion to Patrick and her children brings her to the brink of despair when the police deem it an attempted murder.This book kept me wondering just who stabbed Patrick. Surprisingly, her children are not evil, and all of them are tortured by the event. Yet all three keep a tight hold on what really happened. Melissa, the mother, is the main character. I admired the way she protected her children while searching for answers. The child at fault chimes in from time to time with more insight into the awful event, (though I still wasn’t sure who this child is.) At times I wondered if it was one of the children after all. Was it an adult the kids are covering for? Was it someone else in the family, or someone else in the tight-knit community? Even with the father finally waking from a coma, and telling who plunged the knife into him, the answers remain unclear.I was grabbed by the throat, heart, and mind upon the the first few sentences, and never released until the last page of this book. First sentences of Wall of Silence:I thought Dad’s blood would smell of him, that soft citrus scent I’ve known all my life. But all I can smell on my hands are bitter pennies.I look down on his face. He’s so white, so quiet.Is this really happening?
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  • Tom Stretton
    January 1, 1970
    An excellent read that will keep you guessing.I selected this book as my 'First Reads' book for this month based on the blurb. I am absolutely delighted that I did and I think I'd go as far as to say it is the best first reads selection I've ever made. A story of the seemingly perfect Byatt family that is thrown into turmoil from the opening pages of the story as Patrick, husband of Melissa and father to Lewis, Lilly and Grace lies on the kitchen floor of their family home with a head injury and An excellent read that will keep you guessing.I selected this book as my 'First Reads' book for this month based on the blurb. I am absolutely delighted that I did and I think I'd go as far as to say it is the best first reads selection I've ever made. A story of the seemingly perfect Byatt family that is thrown into turmoil from the opening pages of the story as Patrick, husband of Melissa and father to Lewis, Lilly and Grace lies on the kitchen floor of their family home with a head injury and stab wound, injuries that leave him fighting for his life. But what makes this even more terrifying an ordeal for Melissa is the way their children are just stood around their father calmly watching him dying on the floor, a fact that tells Melissa that this unthinkable tragedy must have been caused by one of their children. As Patrick lays comatose in hospital, Melissa is met by a 'wall of silence' as she tries to extract the truth from their children whilst also trying to protect them from the on-going police investigation as well as the rumours within their community that begin to show that the Byatts perfect little family, may not be so perfect after all. Excellent read and a nailed on 5 star story for me. Although there is a small mistake by the author in the timeline of when Patricks Mother and Father met and the age of Patrick. Other than that though, brilliant!
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  • EsquiredToRead
    January 1, 1970
    Dark, suspenseful, and intriguing. I couldn't put it down. Good character and town background that kept me wanting to read to find out more. Also, I liked the format of this book a lot with the mixed in chapters of the Facebook group chats. Very good way to tie in and felt a little like the "Big Little Lies" format which I LOVED. This definitely wasn't perfect. A lot of hints and clues thrown out there weren't fleshed out, the ending was SUPER rushed, and it ended up focusing on only solving the Dark, suspenseful, and intriguing. I couldn't put it down. Good character and town background that kept me wanting to read to find out more. Also, I liked the format of this book a lot with the mixed in chapters of the Facebook group chats. Very good way to tie in and felt a little like the "Big Little Lies" format which I LOVED. This definitely wasn't perfect. A lot of hints and clues thrown out there weren't fleshed out, the ending was SUPER rushed, and it ended up focusing on only solving the mystery instead of completely ironing out family dynamics. (view spoiler)[ What did Bill do to her mom? Was I the only one that thought that there was something more to her mom saying she felt suffocated by Bill and Rosemary? What REALLY happened with her dad? All those little things that basically just confirmed Bill and Rosemary were "bad" but not WHAT they specifically did (hide spoiler)] However, I can't knock off stars because I could barely do anything else with my time until I finished this book. So, I'd definitely recommend. Just keep that in mind as you get invested in some dangling past issues. This comes out April 1, I believe. This was my choice for First Picks this Month and I'm very glad I chose it.
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  • Mandy Crumb
    January 1, 1970
    I am torn over how to rate this one because I am split 50/50 over how good it was. 2? 3? I settled on 3 because of the formatting and believable depiction of the children. I picked up a evil Stepford Wives vibe and was curious to see how that played out. I was sadly disappointed. A little brainwashing would have improved the story! If not for the vibe that something was off with the adults, would have struggled to understand why adults were in the story. They were shells of people who were not I am torn over how to rate this one because I am split 50/50 over how good it was. 2? 3? I settled on 3 because of the formatting and believable depiction of the children. I picked up a evil Stepford Wives vibe and was curious to see how that played out. I was sadly disappointed. A little brainwashing would have improved the story! If not for the vibe that something was off with the adults, would have struggled to understand why adults were in the story. They were shells of people who were not likeable or believable. The character development of the adults with the exception of Ryan and Daphne fell flat for me.All of the children characters were well written. I loved the way the one character wrote some of the chapters and gave a different view to the story. The idea of a Facebook chat group seemed plausible and was a nice touch. All in all, I finished the book but only because I liked the children. I would struggle to recommend it.
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  • Moxie Cosmos
    January 1, 1970
    Secret Read About SecretsThis compelling story is beautifully-crafted to keep the readers suspicions shifting. The child characters were believable, and thats why I guessed part of the ending. It had to be confirmed, of course, and the denouement was quite an achievement. I rated this four stars for the authors skills and for her ability to capture a womans worst fears. Still, it was way beyond this readers tolerance of domestic drama. In that sense, it seems too much a beach read (no offense Secret Read About SecretsThis compelling story is beautifully-crafted to keep the reader’s suspicions shifting. The child characters were believable, and that’s why I guessed part of the ending. It had to be confirmed, of course, and the denouement was quite an achievement. I rated this four stars for the author’s skills and for her ability to capture a woman’s worst fears. Still, it was way beyond this reader’s tolerance of domestic drama. In that sense, it seems too much a “beach read” (no offense intended toward beaches). There is so much tragedy here that I would have liked more gravitas. I do like the idea of pointing out the hypocrisy of ideal communities, yet regret the sullying of utopian thinking. We need to live, love, and reproduce with our eyes wide open. Buchanan pinpointed the need to trust our instincts.
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  • Deborah
    January 1, 1970
    A closed community where everyone knows every one else's business can be extra stressful when your husband gets stabbed. Everyone wanted to try and solve the crime to ensure their neighborhood remained "safe". In reality it was full of nosy, snobby, and/or fake people who tried to make themselves out to be better than they were, especially the husband's family.This was a quick read, fairly interesting. You keep guessing who might have done it and wonder if there is a bigger secret that the kids A closed community where everyone knows every one else's business can be extra stressful when your husband gets stabbed. Everyone wanted to try and solve the crime to ensure their neighborhood remained "safe". In reality it was full of nosy, snobby, and/or fake people who tried to make themselves out to be better than they were, especially the husband's family.This was a quick read, fairly interesting. You keep guessing who might have done it and wonder if there is a bigger secret that the kids are hiding. The ending was expected, but I wish the story had continued to lead up to the ending rather than jumping ahead to the end like it did. It would have taken only another chapter or two.
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