Just Two Weeks, by Amanda Sington-Williams, is a taut psychological thriller.
Jolene “Jo” Carr is in a fragile state of mind. Recently she was made redundant from a job she thought was secure. Dealing with this setback, she decides to go on vacation by herself when her partner, Mark, has to stay behind to work.
On the first day of her holiday, she meets Zara, a fellow Brit staying at the same resort. Zara invites Jo to tag along to a beach that Zara says is superior. Jo goes with Zara, not knowing at the time, that her life is about to change. Zara swipes Jo’s money, passport, and credit cards. When Jo reports the crime, not many are sympathetic.
Jo learns that Zara is actually named Raquel. When Jo returns home, things aren’t right. She fears Raquel is stalking her, but no one believes her, including her partner and mother. Is Jo imagining it or is there a real threat?
The beauty of this book is that the author holds key information back from the reader, not allowing the reader to see much more than the main character. This places the reader in Jo’s shoes, wondering how much is really happening and how much is Jo’s imagination. The suspense is unnerving right from the start and the nagging doubt makes the reader uncomfortable, feeling guilty about discounting Jo’s fears.
Jo is a difficult character to believe. She’s unsure of herself, makes stupid choices, and tends to be overly dramatic. Yet her fear comes through loud and clear, adding to the reader’s discomfort. What if she really is being stalked? Is the reader just as bad as everyone?
This edgy read is hard to put down. As Jo searches for answers, the reader is anxious to know the truth. Slowly things are revealed and the ending may shock you.
Stalking is a frustrating crime that is difficult to prove. The author does a wonderful job capturing Jo’s paranoia and frustration. Jo teeters on the edge of insanity, enraging those around her, and this pushes Jo closer and closer to her breaking point. Not only is the suspense over Raquel mesmerizing, but so is the suspense over Jo’s mental state. Is she losing it or is she being stalked? This is a masterful psychological thriller that whisks the reader right into the heart of the madness, challenging them to forge through their own fear to reach the final page.
While the story is thrilling, there are some typos that should be corrected. Most are silly punctuation issues, but at one point, lightning is spelled three different ways (lightning, lightening, and lighting) on two consecutive pages. These words are easily confused, but all have different meanings. It’s a shame these errors were overlooked before publishing since they mar such a wonderfully constructed thriller. Hopefully the author addresses the issues right away so reviewers focus on the matter at hand: The heart-stopping suspense and the fabulous ride that Amanda Sington-Williams takes the reader on.
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