Review: Close My Eyes by Sophie McKenzie

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Title: Close My Eyes
Author: Sophie McKenzie
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Page Count: 400
Format: Hardcover
Release Date: July 9, 2013
Source: First Reads
Rating: 3.5-stars

Book Summary: When Geniver Loxley lost her daughter at birth eight years ago, her world stopped… and never fully started again. Mothers with strollers still make her flinch; her love of writing has turned into a half-hearted teaching career; and she and her husband, Art, have slipped into the kind of rut that seems inescapable.

But then a stranger shows up on their doorstep, telling Gen the very thing she’s always wanted to hear: that her daughter Beth was not stillborn, but was taken away as a healthy infant and is still out there, somewhere, waiting to be found. It’s insane, unbelievable. But why would anyone make that up? A fissure suddenly opens up in Gen’s carefully reconstructed life, letting in a flood of unanswerable questions. Where is Beth now? Why is Art so reluctant to get involved? To save his wife from further hurt? Or is it something more sinister? And who can she trust to help her?

Ignoring the warnings of her husband and friends, Gen begins to delve into the dark corners of her past, hopeful she’ll find a clue to her daughter’s whereabouts. But hope quickly turns into fear and paranoia, as she realizes that finding the answers might open the door to something even worse than not knowing. A truth that could steal everything she holds close – even her own life.

My Review: I received Close My Eyes through Goodreads First Reads in exchange for an honest review.

I was pretty excited to receive this since there were such positive reviews for it — and maybe more so because this was the first giveaway I had ever won.

This book is a psychological thriller that centers on one woman’s heartbreaking loss that when faced with a glint of hope will stop at nothing to fix the past.

One of the reasons I wanted to read Close My Eyes was because it was being compared to Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl. While they have similar ideas, I don’t think it’s fair to compare the two. Gone Girl had a much stronger plot and the characters were fleshed out better.

During the first half of the novel Gen spends a lot of her time thinking and worrying about her stillborn baby while wondering if her friends and family could have lied to her this whole time. Everyone around her thinks she’s obsessed with the traumatic event since it has been eight years and they think it’s time for her to finally let go. I found the second half much more enjoyable because Gen finally takes action instead of continuously dwelling on the past. It was nice for Gen to interact with the other characters instead of everything being one-sided.

One problem I had was the characters were predictable and at times too dramatic to be believable. Another issue was that Gen tended to get lost in her thoughts a lot to the point that it was becoming distracting.

There was one twist that I wasn’t expecting while reading the book. While I won’t go into detail about it, it didn’t feel like it meshed well with the rest of the book. It felt as if McKenzie was trying too hard to impress or shock the reader.

Despite it being over the top at times, it was still a page turner. Whether it was because I merely wanted to see if I was right about the plot or simply because I was deep into the story, I’m not sure.

Final Thoughts: This is a quick read that is predictable at times but still enjoyable in the end.

(Goodreads) (Amazon)

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