AUTHOR, Book Review, Fiction, Read in 2013, Review Book, S

2013.17 REVIEW – Evidence of Life by Barbara Taylor Sissel

Evidence of Life
by Barbara Taylor Sissel

Copyright: 2013
Pages: 304
Read: March 29 – April 4, 2013
Challenge: No challenge
Yearly count: 17
Format: Print
Source: Publicist for blog tour


On the last ordinary day of her life, Abby Bennett feels like the luckiest woman alive. But everyone knows that luck doesn’t last forever…

As her husband, Nick, and daughter, Lindsey, embark on a weekend camping trip to the Texas Hill Country, Abby looks forward to having some quiet time to herself. She braids Lindsey’s hair, reminds Nick to drive safely and kisses them both goodbye. For a brief moment, Abby thinks she has it all—a perfect marriage, a perfect life—until a devastating storm rips through the region, and her family vanishes without a trace.

When Nick and Lindsey are presumed dead, lost in the raging waters, Abby refuses to give up hope. Consumed by grief and clinging to her belief that her family is still alive, she sets out to fine them. But as disturbing clues begin to surface, Abby realizes that the truth may be far more sinister than she imagined. Soon she finds herself caught in a current of lies that threaten to unhinge her and challenge everything she once believed about her marriage and family.

With a voice that resonates with stunning clarity, Barbara Taylor Sissel delivers a taut and chilling mystery about a mother’s love, a wife’s obsession and the invisible fractures that can shatter a family.

Review: I do believe that 2013 is going to go down in the record books as the year I read the most awesome books, ever! Seriously. I just keep reading winner after winner!

So where do I start in the love-fest that will be this review? How about with this – go buy a copy and move it to the top of your to-read pile, ASAP!

For me this book started off and never let up. I was constantly wanting to know exactly what happened to Nick and Lindsey. Were they dead? Did Nick run off and take Lindsey with him? Personally I couldn’t get through the pages quick enough to find out what happened to half of Abby’s family.

Abby … oh, dear Abby. My heart broke for her character. I wanted her to have closure so badly. I know that there are a lot of families out there that never get closure, but I was really hoping that she would get it in the end. You had to pity her a little bit. But at the same time I wanted to shake her out of the funk she got in. I don’t really want to say that her character really got obnoxious, because it’s hard to tell how anyone would react in that situation – everyone grieves differently – but, at the same time it was difficult to believe that she was as naive as she was acting.

But Nick is really the character I want to talk about. I had an issue that we never really got to “know” him. He disappeared within like the first 10 pages and then everything regarding him was from other people’s perspectives, whether it was Abby, Kate, Abby’s mother or Nick’s co-workers. I understood why Ms. Sissel set the book up in the manner she did, but I felt as if Nick really never got to have his own say into what happened in his and Abby’s marriage. It would have been nice to have his perspective on a few things – was Abby really that naive or did she look the other way because it was easiest? I think it would have been interesting to see that perspective of the story. But it didn’t hurt my overall opinion of the book itself, I just think it would have been an interesting direction to have gone in.

But Kate is really the one character I did. not. like. Period. She was shady. And yet she wanted to be Abby’s best friend. She betrayed her. And yet she expected Abby to just forgive her for everything. And Abby did just that. It just irritated me, because I felt as if Kate really took advantage of Abby. I don’t know, there was just something about her that rubbed me wrong I guess.

Overall, the storyline was interesting. While the outcome was somewhat predictable, there was definitely one wild character that came out of left field in my opinion. It definitely added the twist that really helped the book to its exciting finish. The writing was excellent.

I can’t say enough about this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it and would highly recommend it to anyone. It definitely makes me want to read Ms. Sissel’s previous books!


**I received a copy of this book to be part of a blog tour. I received no monetary compensation and all opinions expressed are my own.