The Evidence Against You by Gillian McAllister
Publishing Date: 18th April 2019
Source: Received from the publisher, thank you!
Number of pages: 422
Genre: Mystery, Crime, Thriller
DON’T MISS THE BRAND-NEW THRILLER FROM THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF EVERYTHING BUT THE TRUTH AND ANYTHING YOU DO SAY
It’s the day her father will be released from jail. Izzy English has every reason to feel conflicted – he’s the man who gave her a childhood filled with happy memories. But he has also just served seventeen years for the murder of her mother.
Now, Izzy’s father sends her a letter. He wants to talk, to defend himself against each piece of evidence from his trial. But should she give him the benefit of the doubt? Or is her father guilty as charged, and luring her into a trap?
People can’t get enough of Gillian McAllister’s psychological thrillers . . .
Izzy’s father was found guilty of her mother’s murder and sentenced. Fast forward 18 years and he’s being released now and of course gets in touch with his daughter to profess his innocence. Izzy doesn’t know what to think – he was sentenced, so he was found guilty but he’s also her father that he misses terribly, a father who gave her a childhood filled with plenty of happy, unforgettable moments – but he also murdered her mother! Part of her believes him, so she decides to give him a chance and together they try to uncover the truth – what has really happened and is Gabe as innocent as he says?
I think that after hearing brilliant things about Gillian McAllister, I was simply expecting a book that will blow me away, however “The Evidence Against You” left me with mixed feelings. I, of course, appreciated how deceitful the story was. Throughout the book, along the way, Izzy starts to dig deeper and deeper and finds out that things are much more complicated that they seemed at first, that her mother has kept secrets and lied, but well, the dead can’t defend themselves, right, so it was really confusing for her to decide who to trust, her late mother or her father, and I wouldn’t like to put myself in her shoes to be honest.
I couldn’t engage with the characters in a way that I like to. I was not sure what to think about them, what to make of them. Izzy seemed so emotionless, detached, she lived day after day but she didn’t enjoy her life, she used to keep secrets all the time and from everybody, for no reasons really and she didn’t feel very well rounded. But in the end I was really glad to see that she eventually found the courage to come out of her shell, to do this what makes her happy, to see her relaxed and happy with her life again.
The book grows on you in time though, and even though the characters may not be your favourite ones, I was immersed in the events and the clever plot. I was intrigued to see if Gabe was telling the truth, because of course the author has cared for it not to be too straightforward, she gave us plenty of options and situations to make up our minds, though I found myself changing my own all the time. I simply wasn’t sure who I can trust, and there was a moment or two that I also started to doubt in Izzy herself, gah. As for Gabe again, I had a feeling that he tries to manipulate and really, till the end I found I can’t relax around him.
I really liked how the author gave us the possibility to look at different evidence and see how it works for the different involved sides and people – that was a very clever move from her! It was thrilling to see how one word, one sentence, can change your mind or point you in totally different direction, make you think and sometimes over think. However, there came a moment that it started to feel a little too repetitive, when Izzy was starting to believe in her father innocence and then discovering something that made her – again! – withdrew from contact with him, and then the same pattern repeating itself. Perhaps this is why I found the story progressing very slowly and sometimes I had a feeling that we’re simply not moving ahead.
Nevertheless, the final reveal surprised me, though I am still not my sure what my feelings about it are. On one hand, the author has brilliantly tangled up all the threads, skilfully hidden all the tips that were there for those with eagle eyes (sadly, not me then) but on the other I felt, I don’t know, lukewarm? Disappointed? Also, there was too less tension for me, I just didn’t feel there was any big mystery to be solved, that there was something really bad going to happen. But on the whole I loved how the author has written the story, with the reader (me) being torn between wanting Gabe to be innocent and then believing he most certainly isn’t. It was dark and thought – provoking and I am looking forward to read Gillian McAllister’s previous books.
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