WOW – what a story! What a plot! What amazing writing! To say I loved this book is understatement! When I read the premise – something about micro-technology and greed run amuck, my interest was peaked. What I got was a book full of surprises, full of emotional roller coasters and suspense and twists and turns and a very flawed protagonist that I adored!
Emily Firestone has worked for years to get her life on track and keep her life on track as she lives with bi-polar disorder. She is medicated, a child psychologist and has met a wonderful man who is a medical researcher actually working on a vaccine for the disease that killed her father. Everything appears to finally be flowing in the right direction for Emily. When her boyfriend asks her to go sailing with him, although terrified of water and unable to swim, Emily decides to conquer her fears and give it a go. The day goes beautifully and they cap off the evening with wine – beautiful, right? The next morning Paulo is gone without a trace and no explanation for his disappearance. All suspicions point to Emily and, of course, being bi-polar does not help her case at all, nor does it help her subsequent actions. Her life begins to spiral out of control as she searches for answers and the police search for her.
Full dis-closure: I am a medicated bi-polar person. It took years to get a diagnosis and even longer to find the proper meds to make me stable enough to function in society – some would question whether or not I do that now. 😉 It is rare that I ever see someone with bi-polar disorder characterized correctly or even remotely accurately in the media – news or fiction – so as I was reading And Then You Were Gone, I was doing so with a very critical eye. I was amazingly surprised! Reading Emily’s story, her thought processes, her actions, her rationalizations, her play with her medications, her paranoia – ALL of it – was so familiar that it was spooky! This alone was enough to pull me into the book and I encourage you to read it simply to understand what it it is like to be a person with bi-polar 2. More importantly, however, is the story line which is fantastic! As we, a society, need more and more vaccines to counter act an increasingly mounting number of diseases due to climate change, there are going to be those who skirt the laws and the regulations to make that happen. This book deals with some of those consequences. It also has a minor story line that addresses PTSD that is handled very well. ALL of this is wrapped up in a well written, edge of your seat suspenseful thriller! You just cannot beat that. Obviously I highly recommend And Then You Were Gone to any and everyone!
Thank you #Netgalley, #CrookedLaneBooks and especially to #RJJacobs for allowing me to read this fantastic book in advance of publication.