#BookReview: THE BREAKDOWN by B.A. Paris

If you can’t trust yourself, who can you trust?

Cass is having a hard time since the night she saw the car in the woods, on the winding rural road, in the middle of a downpour, with the woman sitting inside—the woman who was killed. She’s been trying to put the crime out of her mind; what could she have done, really? It’s a dangerous road to be on in the middle of a storm. Her husband would be furious if he knew she’d broken her promise not to take that shortcut home. And she probably would only have been hurt herself if she’d stopped.

But since then, she’s been forgetting every little thing: where she left the car, if she took her pills, the alarm code, why she ordered a pram when she doesn’t have a baby.

The only thing she can’t forget is that woman, the woman she might have saved, and the terrible nagging guilt.

Or the silent calls she’s receiving, or the feeling that someone’s watching her…

Release Date: July 18, 2017

Amazon / Amazon UK / Amazon CA

 

My Review

You know that person whose personality grates on you to the point where grit your teeth and clench your jaw every time you’re forced to be around her? Cass is that person for me. Since this book is written in first person narrative, from Cass’s perspective, my ability to enjoy the book was hindered by my dislike of her character.

A horn blares angrily behind me and as the sound chases me down the pitch-black lane into the woods, it feels like an omen.

Cass’s personality borders on melodramatic. She whines obsessively and her internal dialogue is mostly ‘woe is me’. She is certainly not the proactive type, but more one who waits until action is forced upon her. She questions little, instead essentially hiding her head under her pillow and hoping the world will go away.

Her words slam through me and tears prick my eyes. The guilt I feel is almost unbearable.

The pacing drags through the first 3/4 of the book. Cass forgets, obsesses, forgets something else, obsesses some more. Her husband’s reaction to her downward spiral borders on indifference and irritation, making him equally unlikable.

He gets up. “Can I give you a piece of advice, Cass? Take the pills the doctor prescribed for you. Then we might both get some peace of mind.”

Pacing picks up substantially through the last quarter of the book. Pieces start fitting together as we uncover the truth of the murder and Cass’s memory loss. I wasn’t surprised by the outcome. The clues along the way are all fairly obvious. Even so, I enjoyed how it played out.

Then we come to the very end, which, after all the build-up, fizzled out. I wanted more of a zing, but what I got was a quiet pfft.

So, clearly, I mostly disliked much about the book. That being said, the author’s writing style is engaging. This story offers thought-provoking content, though the unremarkable characters make it largely forgettable.

*I received an advance ebook copy from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review.*

 

Thanks for reading. 🙂