by Wendy Corsi Staub
September 11, 2001 was a tragic date for many American, but the murders that occurred afterward were terrifying for Allison MacKenna. She barely survived the killer’s rage. Ten years later, MacKenna is married to a man who lost his first wife in one of the Towers on 9/11. She, Mack, and their three children have moved to a wealthy Westchester County housing development. They are dealing with Mack’s new promotion, which keeps him from his family more often, and with his insomnia. Soon, they will deal with a problem far worse. The man arrested a decade ago has died, and soon after, new murders occur, and the killer is using the signature of the original killer. When the deaths hit closer to home, Allison faces a terrifying situation…whether she can trust the man she married. With the new drugs he’s taking, he’s sleepwalking, but is he committing heinous acts without realizing it?
A good follow up plot to her first in this series, Nightwatcher. The killer has returned and terrorizing the main character. I’ve read similar plots before but Staub’s way of resurrecting the killer, though not new, is good.
Allison Taylor McKenna: 34, lives in Westchester, married, has three children. She and her husband have a BMW and a Lexus SUV. Father abandoned the family when she was nine. Mother died of an overdose. Grew up in Nebraska. Attended the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. Has a degree in fashion. Former fashion editor for a magazine. Drinks diet iced tea. Has a half brother.
James ‘Mack’ McKenna: 44, graying hair, green eyes, suffers from insomnia. Married to Allison. Likes the New York Giants. Was in a fraternity in college. Has a married sister. Is vice president of television sales. His first wife died on 9/11. Parents dead. Was a Big Brother in his early twenties.
Zoe Jennings: Attractive, brunette, used to be pudgy. Knows Mack from years before. Has had several cosmetic surgeries. Married with two children. Stay-at-home mom.
A lot of reflection about the past from Allison and Mack. We see a lot of internal thoughts from most of the supporting cast. Many times these reflections or diversions into various thought interrupt the scene. I found myself wanting to know more about and read more scenes with the killer because at least with the killer, the scenes are tight.
Pretty distinctive voices. However, dialogue and conversations are interrupted by flashback and recollections of recent conversations.
Book is divided into Parts. Chapters are headed by location/date. Written in present tense, although some sentences aren’t quite written correctly, mixing past reflective with present. Lots of background information from both Allison and James. Lengthy chapters.
The interruption of the scenes with flashback are very jolting and I found myself wanting to skip ahead to get to the gist of the scene. If the flashbacks were important, I felt they should have been put in their proper place. Staub does keep you guessing and even adds a surprising revelation at the very end to set up for the next book.