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The Perfect Stranger by Megan Miranda

The Perfect Stranger

by Megan Miranda

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Leah Stevens, a former journalist starting over as a teacher, learns that a young woman, Bethany, has been attacked near the house she shares with Emmy. Then Leah realizes that she has not seen Emmy for days. When the police investigate, it is as if Emmy never existed.

I found this story slow and it constantly went back and forth in time repetitively. We were supposed to see Leah as a "dogged" journalist, but she displays no curiosity at all about Emmy, and Leah's big story which led to her downfall was in fact fuelled by


a desire for personal vengeance.

Leah seems to be an ineffectual teacher and a poor judge of character. Her loyalty to Emmy was mystifying (they seemed mostly to have drunk a lot of vodka together and smiled at one another when Emmy stole things), and her insistence on constantly keeping things from the police seemed at odds with her desire for truth.

Just generally annoying and unpleasant in tone. ( )
  pgchuis | Jul 27, 2017 |
After losing her job, Leah finds again an old friend and the two move to rural Pennsylvanian to start over. Some months later, however, a girl very similar to Leah is found severely hurt near their house and her friend goes missing. Maybe the threatening emails and a possible stalker had something to do with it?

This was a 3.5.

I really enjoyed All the Missing Girls but mostly because the backward storytelling had me gripped to the book. Considering this one goes the normal way, I wasn't expecting the author to keep me so excited again. Gladly, she did.

It's true that I didn't care enough about the characters. And Leah being so weird contributed. I did get she had suffered a severe blow when she lost her job but I didn't get how that would stop you from going to the police for things if your life may be on the line. It was like she had this filter that never allowed her to absorb just how terrible the situation was. This made me anxious for her and anything that went wrong with her instead of pitying I'd think of how she deserved it. Not a good way to treat the main character, is it?

On the other had, the story compensated any issues I had with the main character. The plot twists weren't the punch-in-the-stomach kind, the conclusion wasn't stellar but the rhythm was good—and that is very important in a thriller. Even without the backward story device, the author kept me interested until the very end.

Talking about the conclusion, it wasn't surprising but it wasn't so predictable. I thought it was possible from the beginning but I wasn't sure until it was already time the reader suspected. Also, I liked how Miranda tied up all the parts of the mystery.

Not something stellar, nothing that special, but I good thriller nonetheless. If you don't have problems with characters being weird beyond logic, go ahead and have a good time!

Honest review based on an ARC offered through Netgalley. Many thanks to the publisher for this opportunity. ( )
  AnnaBastos | Jun 13, 2017 |
I received a free advance review e-copy of this book and have chosen of my own free will to post a review. As always another great psychological thriller from Megan Miranda that is full of twists and turns. Couldn’t put it down, just had to see what happens next. So many secrets and lies, intrigue, the suspense never quits. A very well written thriller with an amazing plot and a surprise twist at the end. ‘The Perfect Stranger’ is a book that is well worth the read. I look forward to reading more by Megan Miranda. ( )
  iadam | May 29, 2017 |
Thanks to a story she can’t corroborate but which resulted in tragedy, reporter Leah Stevens finds herself without a job or prospects. Seemingly fortuitously, she runs into an old friend she shared an apartment with in college. The friend, Emmy, suggests they become roomies again in a different town where they can both start fresh. Leah lands a job as a teacher but soon finds herself the object of a coworker’s unsolicited and unwanted attention. Then a woman who bears a striking resemblance to her is found murdered, the coworker is brought in for questioning, and Emmy goes missing. Leah reports Emmy’s disappearance but, in an attempt to hide her past from the detective investigating the case, she is evasive in her answers about both the coworker’s actions and her relationship with Emmy. As a result, Leah becomes the main suspect and, to save herself, she begins her own investigation.

I enjoyed The Perfect Stranger by author Megan Miranda with some reservations. There were times when it stretched my suspension of disbelief almost to the breaking point and I often found myself putting it down. However, there’s plenty of suspense and twists and turns and, if the plot seemed at times…unrealistic, these kept me returning to the book to find out where the story would eventually lead. Overall, not a bad read especially for people who enjoy psychological thrillers.

Thanks to Netgalley and Simon & Schuster for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  lostinalibrary | May 28, 2017 |
When Leah runs into Emmy, an old friend she hasn't seen in years, it seems perfect timing. Having had to quit her job as a journalist in Boston and with a restraining order and the threat of a lawsuit hanging over her, she is grateful for Emmy's invitation to move to rural Pennsylvania with her. But starting anew as a high school teacher isn't that easy in a town that seems full of people looking for a fresh start. Megan Miranda did a great job of creating a host of characters that all seemed to be untrustworthy. When Emmy goes missing, Leah has difficulties convincing people that Emmy actually existed at all.
The Perfect Stranger was a decent enough mystery. Maybe I had set my expectations too high because I was mesmerized by Megan Miranda's suspenseful and uniquely told All the Missing Girls last year. The Perfect Stranger dragged a bit in parts. There was a lot going on, plenty of threads to keep straight, but nothing much seemed to be happening and there was no real depth to it. Not sure that makes a lot of sense, but that's how I felt. I also never really warmed up to Leah, and as the entire story was from her perspective, it made it more difficult to become really involved. I was expecting something more from the ending as well. It was anticlimactic.
Overall, this was alright, and I would certainly read more books written by Megan Miranda, but this one just felt a bit too safe.
I received an ARC via NetGalley. ( )
  Pet12 | May 19, 2017 |
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