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The One I Left Behind by Jennifer McMahon

The One I Left Behind (edition 2013)

by Jennifer McMahon

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2863439,411 (3.81)10
Title:The One I Left Behind
Authors:Jennifer McMahon
Info:William Morrow Paperbacks (2013), Edition: Original, Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:review copy, random, fiction

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The One I Left Behind by Jennifer McMahon



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The One I Left Behind is the story of Reggie, whose mother Vera was taken by a serial killer 25 years ago. This serial killer cut off the right hand of his victims before killing them days later. But only her mother’s hand was recovered. The assumption was that her mother was dead but the body just wasn’t discovered. Until she shows up 25 years later at a homeless shelter that is. No sooner is this news of her return out in public or Neptune abducts another woman. Reggie is forced to go back home to take care of her mother and do her own digging if she wants this killer to be found. Told in alternating chapters Ms. McMahon presents her story in past and present. In both timelines Reggie hangs out with her friends Charlie and Tara and she takes steps to catch this serial killer called Neptune. Even though you know that, obviously, 13-year old Reggie did not find her mum or discovered Neptune, there is still plenty of suspense since she finds out what kind of life her mother really led before she disappeared and the author also alludes to something in the past that apparently made the close friendships with her best friends come to an end. In present day there is the race against time before another dead body will show up. This was certainly an entertaining, easy read. ( )
  Ingstje | Jan 18, 2016 |
If it was possible to give more than five stars on a review this book deserves it.
In a typical small American town a silent killer stalks the streets kidnapping, maiming and killing five women and disappearing until twenty years later when suddenly it starts all over again. Is it a copy-cat killer or has the murderer the police dubbed Neptune come out of hiding one last time?
For young Reggie, just thirteen when her mother disappeared, life holds more questions than answers. Whereas the severed right hand of her mom showed up on the doorstep of the police department just like all the others whose bodies where all left on public display days later, her mother’s body was never found. Now a successful architect trying to get on with her life, she is thrown a curve-ball when a call from the hospital reveals her mother has been admitted.
Apparently her mother has been a transient, living in homeless shelters for years. How did she get back home, and why did she not die like all the others. As she begins to ask questions, her best friend from her days in high school, Tara, reappears in their life and takes the job as care-giver for her mother only to be kidnapped and her hand placed on the police department’s steps just like all the others. In a race to save Tara’s life Reggie puts her own life on the line.
Trouble is brewing in this small town. Evil is stirring up the cauldron, slowly adding ingredients such as red-herrings and false suspicions as slowly the pot comes to a boil. With the turn of every page you expect to be totally blown away. McMahon is at her best as she raises the temperature and the tempo until it all spills over and leaves you gasping in surprise
( )
  MarkPSadler | Jan 17, 2016 |
Interesting concept, mostly okay execution. ( )
  miyurose | Sep 3, 2015 |
My first exposure to this author was the book Promise Not To Tell, which was really good, and so I bought a few of her other books and started with this book. This was a Fantastic story. Like Promise Not To Tell, it is a story that happened in the past that dramatically affects the characters later on in life, and then this type of horrible event begins happening again. This author has the rare gift of being able to convincingly write characters when they are in their teens and as adults. she also does an expert job telling the story in alternating chapters going from the past to the present. Then there is the story itself, which holds the reader in its grip until the very end. I usually do not enjoy mystery/thrillers from female authors because with the exception of this author and a few others, such as Gillian Flynn, either the characters are not believable/convincing, the story is ridiculous, or they try to hard to write like a male author. This author delivers on all fronts, and is definitely someone worth reading. ( )
  zmagic69 | Jan 22, 2015 |
I so wanted to love this book, I truly enjoyed other books by McMahon but this one just kind of fell flat. I think a lot was because I really didn’t like Reggie or the way she treated people, yes I know her mother disappeared at a very formative age for her, but she didn’t ever seem to be able to tell when people were being nice or really trying to help her out. And the way she treated her aunt just made me mad.

There was just too many coincidences and the different timelines did get a little confusing at times, especially once Tara was back in the picture because we had just seen her as this very odd teenager and now we are supposed buy her as a caring nurse without any story telling us how she got there it was just a tough sell.

We also never really got to hear Vera’s side of where she had been all those years and then the reveal of who Neptune was it just fell flat, it was rushed and was just odd.

Julia Whelan did a great job at the narration but the book itself was just meh for me.

2 ½ Stars ( )
  susiesharp | Oct 15, 2014 |
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Reggie, a successful architect who left her hometown and the horrific memories of a long ago summer behind, gets a call revealing that her mother has been found alive--a call that forces Reggie to confront the ghosts of her past and find the serial killer known as Neptune before he kills again.… (more)

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