E-Arc Review: The Last Secret You’ll Ever Keep by Laurie Faria Stolarz

Title: The Last Secret You’ll Ever Keep
Author: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Genre: YA Mystery / Thriller / Contemporary
Publication Date: March 16th, 2021
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an earc to read in exchange for a review!




Bestselling author Laurie Faria Stolarz returns with a thrilling novel where an eighteen-year-old girl’s search for answers lands her in one of the most terrifying situations imaginable.

Four days…
Trapped in a well, surrounded by dirt, scratching at the walls trying to find a way out.
Four days of a thirst so strong, that when it finally rains, I drink as much as possible from the dripping walls, not even caring how much dirt comes with it.

Six months…
Since my escape. Since no one believed I was taken to begin with – from my own bed, after a party, when no one else was home…
Six months of trying to find answers and being told instead that I made the whole incident up.

One month…
Since I logged on to the Jane Anonymous site for the first time and found a community of survivors who listen without judgment, provide advice, and console each other when needed.
A month of chatting with a survivor whose story eerily mirrors my own: a girl who’s been receiving triggering clues, just like me, and who could help me find the answers I’m searching for.

Three days…
Since she mysteriously disappears, and since I’m forced to ask the questions: will my chance to find out what happened to me vanish with her? And will I be next?” (Goodreads)

When I saw that there would be a companion novel for Jane Anonymous I just knew I had to read it. That book I read in one sitting because it was too good to put down and I needed to know how everything would unravel. The Last Secret You’ll Ever Keep was no different!

The beginning of the book sets up the plot and introduces us to Terra who is the main character. After being kidnapped and with nobody to believe her, she learns about a site called Jane Anonymous where victims of crime-related trauma can talk with others who have dealt with similar issues.

The website is really the only connection to the first book and I was okay with that because the website does play a huge role and I really enjoyed the mixed format of this book as there are chat messages included. Another thing I liked about the format was that the chapters are split into past and present. It helps to build the full story of what happened to Terra and how much of an impact it has made on her life.

There is nothing more I love than a plot that keeps me invested from start to finish. This one really delivered and had me questioning everyone that talked to Terra. I think what also makes the plot even crazier is that Terra is also seen as an unreliable narrator because of her past. She also doesn’t make the best decisions at times and it made me want to shake her but I can also understand her perspective. She has been through a lot and when everyone thinks you are a liar, you want to do everything to prove them wrong. I definitely wasn’t expecting that ending and had to take a break from reading because it was becoming too much for my poor soul, haha.

When it came to the minor characters, I can’t say I felt too much. Her aunt could be a lot at times and I can understand why their relationship wasn’t good. Everyone else I just kept questioning their motives.

There are great messages that can be found through this book and the biggest one I can’t say because spoilers. You’ll have to read it to find out!

Overall, I really loved this book and can’t wait to see what else this author writes and I need to check out her other works. She definitely knows how to get the heart pumping!

Advertisement

Jane Anonymous: E-Arc Review

Earcreview2

37650881._SY475_.jpgTitle: Jane Anonymous
Author: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Genre: YA Contemporary/Thriller
Publication Date: January 7th, 2020

eARC provided by publisher through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

synopsis header
“Then, “Jane” was just your typical 17-year-old in a typical New England suburb getting ready to start her senior year. She had a part-time job she enjoyed, an awesome best friend, overbearing but loving parents, and a crush on a boy who was taking her to see her favorite band. She never would’ve imagined that in her town where nothing ever happens, a series of small coincidences would lead to a devastating turn of events that would forever change her life.

Now, it’s been three months since “Jane” escaped captivity and returned home. Three months of being that girl who was kidnapped, the girl who was held by a “monster.” Three months of writing down everything she remembered from those seven months locked up in that stark white room. But, what if everything you thought you knew―everything you thought you experienced―turned out to be a lie?” (Goodreads)

reviewheaderFrom the beginning of the first chapter, this book pulls you in. It’s gripping, heartbreaking, and talks about an issue that happens more than we would like to think. I loved everything about this book and am excited to share my thoughts with you.

The book begins with a prologue from the main character, Jane. She talks about this being about her days being captive and that this will be her outlet to tell her story. I enjoyed the aspect of this being like a memoir. It’s easy to feel connected with Jane because of it. There are also two different time periods: Then and Now. It helps to bring it all together.

Jane has a hard time dealing with what happened to her. She has to struggle with being paranoid of those around her and figuring out what normal is. It’s hard to adjust and at times she makes her room feel like the room she was held captive in. People don’t know how to talk to her after it all, including her friends. You just feel bad over and over again for Jane.

I enjoyed seeing the friendship rekindle between Jane and Jack. They were close to dating before she went missing. He gives her space and little by little she starts to open up to him. It was really sweet and those were my favorite moments of the book.

The plot is thrilling and it was hard to set it down for just a few minutes. I needed to know what happened and who the kidnapper was. There are a couple plot twists and one is quite major. I didn’t see it coming! Once you find out about it, it’s hard not to feel how Jane feels and you question everything you read.

Overall, I loved this book and its been hard not to think about it constantly. This author does a good job of making you feel so many ways. If you are a fan of YA Contemporary/Thrillers, I would highly suggest you check this one out!