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April 27, 2019

Someone Knows by Lisa Scottoline ~ a Review

by Donna Huber

Lisa Scottoline is still a relatively new-to-me author, but she is quickly becoming a must-read author for me. Someone Knows is her new stand-alone thriller that came out earlier this month.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

Someone Knows
April 2019; G.P. Putnam's Sons; 978-0525539643
audio, ebook, print (400 pages); thrillers
We all do stupid things we are teenagers. We are kids who don't have enough life experience to anticipate consequences or know what to do in a particular situation. That is exactly the problem facing a group of neighborhood children. And now, twenty years later, it is coming back to haunt them.

Julian, the son of a development tycoon, finds a gun hidden in a wooded area in his neighborhood and shows his best friend David. While they are digging it up, Sasha, a typical "mean girl" type, and Allie, who's a bit of an outcast, spot them while running with the neighborhood's running group. Sasha is immediately taken with the gun while Allie wants nothing to do with it. But a pact to keep it a secret binds this group of neighborhood kids to each other. Kyle is a new kid in the neighborhood whom Sasha decides to toy with.

While there is an ensemble cast of characters and we get chapters that focus on the individual characters, including the parents, I feel like Allie is the main character and the others are more the supporting cast. She is the one that seems most affected by the tragic incident and wants to find out what really happened that night. She is also the one I probably related the most to. She's the nice girl, the good kid who always follows the rules. She's also tired of being on the outside looking in and thinks maybe this once it would be okay to bend the rules a bit if it meant acceptance and maybe even having the guy have a crush on like you back.

The story starts 20 years after the incident and then flashes back to the summer of the incident and we learn about what was supposed to be a harmless prank. Then it ends back up in the present when all the secrets known and unknown are revealed.

I had a little trouble getting into this book at the start. I was curious about what happened, but all the characters were so dysfunctional. All the kids had definitely parent problems. Kyle is probably the closest to having a 'normal' family life. He is close to his mother, yet they moved to the neighborhood because his pediatrician father was convicted of molesting his patients. Maybe dysfunction and wealth go together given that all of them are from rich families, except for Kyle.

Outside of the incident, there is a whole lot going on with these kids. Kyle is trying to start over after his world crashes. Sasha is raised by the hired help; her parents are rarely on the same continent. Even so, her mother pressures her to be perfect, the best. Julian is pitted between his mother and his dad who are divorced. While he is the focus of his mother's attention, he really wants his father's attention. David is at odds with this father and feels that abandoned by his mother who spends all her time with his twin sisters. Oh, and he thinks he might be gay. Allie's sister died from cystic fibrosis and her family is reeling from the loss. Of course, from the outside, they all look like they are part of perfect families.

It just seems like too much. But then perhaps they needed to be messed up for the events to occur.

As the end of the story draws near, it felt like the thread of who did the gun really belong to was dropped. There was a brief mention of who Julian saw bury the gun at the beginning and then nothing. I wondered if it was Kyle's. And perhaps it was supposed to lead the reader to have such questions lingering in the back of their mind. I'm glad to say that the mystery is revealed in the end, though the explanation seemed a bit outlandish.

I did stay up too late the night I finished it. Not so much because I had a burning need to know how it ended, but more I wanted the conclusion and for the story to be over. As I said in the beginning, I was curious about what really happened. I wanted to know if my guesses were right.

So Someone Knows might not be the Scottoline's best novel, but it was an interesting read that will give readers a lot to think about. I don't always think of thrillers as book club reads, I think this one could make a good one as there is plenty about the characters, their decisions, and the subsequent reactions to discuss.

Buy Someone Knows at Amazon

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour

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