I am just a girl who loves reading and talking about books
Thirteen years ago someone did something very bad to Anna. Now it’s her turn to get even …
Anna lives a solitary existence, taking solace in order and routine. Her only friend is the lonely old lady next door. She doesn’t like to let people to get too close – she knows how much damage they can do.
Then one ordinary day Anna witnesses a devastating road accident and recognises the driver as Carla, the woman who ruined her life all those years ago. Now it’s Anna’s chance to set things straight but her revenge needs to be executed carefully …
First she needs to get to know Liam, the man injured in the accident. She needs to follow the police investigation. She needs to watch Carla from the shadows…
But as Anna’s obsession with Carla escalates, her own secrets start to unravel. Is Carla really dangerous or does Anna need to worry about someone far closer to home?
Safe with Me by K. L. Slater is about a woman on a revenge mission. It is clear that Anna hates Carla right from the start. The two women meet at an accident scene years after the incident that caused the grudge. Anna is still angry about whatever happened between them but it seems as if Carla doesn’t even remember her. However, this encounter sets off Anna’s revenge mission.
The story is narrated in a way that keeps the incident a secret up to the final chapters. As readers, we only know that Carla did something wrong to Anna but we don’t know exactly what it was. The book has multiple narrators. Anna takes us through her troubles at work and her revenge mission at the same time. I found myself sympathizing with her at first. I mean everyone gets overwhelmed by work at some point, right? I feel the same way about filing just like Anna felt about undelivered mail that kept piling up lol. Anyway, we soon get to see just how bad things are for Anna at work as her obsession with revenge also becomes apparent. Her narrations were so dark. As a reader, it felt like being trapped in the mind of a psychopath. She is also an unreliable narrator which added to the mystery of the story because it was hard to determine what was real from her perspective. Anna is also a complex character with a number of conditions such as OCD. As the story progresses, Anna becomes creepier and it is then clear just how disturbed she is. Soon, everything spirals out of control. Slater was able to create such a realistic character that I found myself mixed up about Anna. I felt sorry for her at some point but she scared me in other chapters.
“You could say it feels a bit like dressing up in the brightest party clothes so nobody sees how low and lost you feel underneath. You’d be surprised how easy it is to hide your true feelings with a smile and a kind word”.
Other narrators include Anna’s old neighbor, Mrs. Peat who is her only friend. Her perspective helps us get insight into Anna’s life from childhood to the incident that changed her life. I liked the friendship between the two women because they seemed like such an odd pair. There are other narrators who help in connecting the dots through present and past narrations.
One thing that I truly enjoyed about this book is the fact that everybody had a secret. Each of the characters was deceptive in a way. Some of the secrets were dark including murder and abuse. Others were funny like a certain character pretending to be weaker than she really was so as to get sympathy. Other secrets were creepy and simply horrifying. Finding out the secrets was one of the most exciting parts about this book.
“It always amazes me how it is so easy to appear one way to the people around you but to live inside as someone else entirely.”
Safe with Me by K. L. Slater had a number of twists that kept me guessing throughout. The story took so many turns that it was hard to predict how it will go. I tried guessing but ended up being wrong a couple of times. It wasn’t even clear who the villain was. I enjoyed most of these twists although some of them were a bit off, bizarre and somewhat unbelievable. That is my only issue with the book. I especially didn’t like the final chapters.
If you are looking for a fast-paced thriller then you may want to read this. It was a quick read and I loved the anticipation that had me going through the chapters fast to try and find out about the incident that caused the grudge between Carla and Anna. If you like unreliable, creepy narrators then you may also enjoy this one. The book does have some heavy themes surrounding Anna’s family and her past. However, I definitely enjoyed this debut novel by Slater and look forward to the author’s next book.
A special thank you to Bookouture and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.