If I stay, he will kill me. If I leave, he’ll destroy Addie and Drew.
Jillian Kane appears to have it all – a successful career, a gorgeous home, a loving husband, and two wonderful children. The reality behind closed doors is something else entirely. For nine years, she has hid the bruises and the truth of her abusive marriage in order to protect Addie and Drew, knowing, if she left, Gordon would destroy her-destroy them.
When, in an act of desperation, she flees, her worst nightmare is realized, and she finds herself on the run with her two young children, no money, and no plan. With Gordon in hot pursuit, there is only one inescapable certainty: No matter where she goes, he will find her. Kill her. And take her children.
A riveting page-turner, HUSH LITTLE BABY exposes the shame and terror of domestic violence as well as the disturbing role manipulation and sabotage can play in the high-stakes game of child custody. Suspenseful and unforgettably moving, it’s a novel about the unbreakable bonds of family and the astounding, terrifying devotion of a mother’s love.
My first thought after reading the synopsis is, “geez, what a difficult topic to write about.” But, at the same time, I knew that if the author could pull it off, this could easily be an amazing, compelling, gripping story.
So here’s my honest thought after reading the entire book: it’s not a terrible book–but I think it’s a little lacking on several aspects.
I will begin by saying that Suzanne Redfearn is a great storyteller. There’s no denying that! The prose was beautiful, and there were many moments throughout this book where I was absolutely taken away by the imagery and quality of the prose. The storyline was alright–though the premise of the book was interesting and Redfearn seemed to build up the suspense at all the right places, there were times where I felt that the story had dragged on a bit. Sometimes I felt that the narration was a little long-winded, and there were times where I had to put down the book to take a break: not because it was “too much to handle” or “too suspenseful”–which would be the reasons I take a break in a book that really captured my full attention–but because I felt a little bit, for the lack of a better word, bored.
Another downfall of the book was the main character, Jill. I have a feeling that the author was trying to paint her as a strong woman who was caught in a very unfortunate situation, but there were moments in the book where I really had difficulty sympathizing with her. Though the premise of the book was on saving her children and getting away from her abusive husband, there were parts of the book where I actually felt like she was a pretty cold mother–while on the road, Jill hardly interacted with her children, and her love for them seemed to have taken a backseat throughout the book behind her love for designer hand bags and kcups.
All in all, a good read–not particularly memorable, but well paced and well written. A stronger protagonist would have done a lot more for the story, but as it stands, it’s a decent read on a difficult topic.
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