I had a review copy of this book months before its release date and kept putting off reading it until closer to publication but finally succumbed after seeing a few reviews appearing around the place.
I really loved Chevy Stevens’ Still Missing which I read years ago, have read almost all of her books since and follow the author on social media. In a non-stalkerish way. #Obvs
Unfortunately I had no idea I was going to get so engrossed in this book which I read in one very long bath-sitting. I actually started it after finishing something else, thinking I’d just flick through the first few chapters….Never Let You Go
by Chevy Stevens
on March 14th 2017
Genres: Psychological Thriller
ISBN: 1250034566, 9781250034564
Eleven years ago, Lindsey Nash escaped into the night with her young daughter and left an abusive relationship. Her ex-husband was sent to jail and she started over with a new life.
Now, Lindsey is older and wiser, with a teenage daughter who needs her more than ever. When her ex-husband is finally released, Lindsey believes she’s cut all ties. But she gets the sense that someone is watching her.
Her new boyfriend is threatened. Her home is invaded, and her daughter is shadowed. Lindsey is convinced it’s her ex-husband, even though he claims he’s a different person.
But can he really change? Is the one who wants her dead closer to home than she thought?
A couple of hours later I’d had to exit the bath to refill my champagne glass and stock up on chuppa chup lollipops. (Or as I like to think of them… h’orderves)
So, obviously I loved this book.
Stevens flits about in time a little in the beginning of the book and gets us up to speed quickly.
I liked that she didn’t draw Lindsey’s life / relationship with Andrew out excessively. We popped in on a few occasions over several years to see him change from an older and slightly controlling – though mostly charming – suitor, to a more controlling and jealous newlywed, to an abusive (and mostly apologetic) husband. Of course those around Lindsey weren’t aware of his behaviour, exacerbated by his heavy drinking and by the time their daughter Sophie is 7, Lindsey feels stuck. But rather than a lengthy cat and mouse scenario during which Lindsey fears for her life and laboriously plots her escape, Andrew is incarcerated… so she and Sophie flee and don’t look back.
In the present it’s 11 years later and Sophie is about to turn 18. Lindsey owns a small cleaning business, is happy with her life and has started a new relationship when she discovers Andrew has been released from jail.
When things start to happen: someone’s been inside a client’s house and then her own place, Lindsey knows it’s Andrew. But things are complicated this time around as she soon learns that Sophie has reached out to her father and seems convinced by his stories of redemption and transformation.
Of course the backcover blurb and Stevens’ past record make it pretty obvious that things won’t actually be as cut and dry as we suspect. Andrew is not the only possible culprit and seems concerned about the accusations, claiming it’s not him.
So, with a twisty and addictive plot Stevens lures us in, offering up complex characters in Lindsey, Sophie and Andrew. And then there’s Lindsey’s boyfriend who she seems reticent to commit to; Sophie’s brand new boyfriend (who seems unduly fascinated with her mother); Lindsey’s long-term support and self-defence instructor who understands loss; as well as her brother… who worries for her safety.
It’s rare I’m kept guessing until the end but Stevens managed to do just that, offering up some obvious suspects and many red herrings. And I was floored by something that occurred 2/3 of the way through the book and… Really. Did. Not. Expect. It.
So… in case it’s not obvious, I adored this new release from the talented Canadian author and highly recommend it.
Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens will be published by St Martin’s Press and available from 14 March 2017.
I received an electronic copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley for review purposes.