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No One Can Know

by Kate Alice Marshall

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3631472,286 (3.58)1
Fiction. Mystery. Suspense. Thriller. HTML:

"Narrator Karissa Vacker ... provides a pitch-perfect performance."- Booklist, on What Lies in the Woods
Three sisters, two murders, and too many secrets to count.

Fourteen years ago, the Palmer sisters—Emma, Juliette, and Daphne—left their home in Arden Hills and never returned. But when Emma discovers she's pregnant and her husband loses his job, she has no option but to return to the house that she and her estranged sisters still own . . . and where their parents were murdered.
Emma has never told anyone what she saw the night her parents died, even when she became the prime suspect. But her presence in the house threatens to uncover secrets that have stayed hidden for years, and the sisters are drawn together once again. As they face their memories of the past, rivalries restart, connections are forged, and, for the first time, Emma starts to ask questions about what really happened that night.
The more Emma learns, the more riddles emerge. And Emma begins to wonder just what her siblings will do to keep the past buried, and whether she did the right thing staying quiet about what was whispered that night: "No one can know."
A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books.

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Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Nathan is a cartoon villain. This was all just boring. I finished it because I wanted to know how or if certain plot lines were connected. They were not. Barely anything was. Marshall repeated herself over and over. I felt like I didn't entirely know the characters beyond what Marshall kept repeating about them, and worse, as the book continued, I realized I didn't want to. These were supposed to be distinct sisters, so different from one another because that's how books written like this work. I welcome that. These characters were not that. Their voices quickly blended, and I gave up on flipping back to chapter headings to remind myself who was narrating. At least fifty pages should have been cut. There were tons of Dead Herrings in here. Thanks to Das Sporking for the term. The foreshadowing was juvenile. The plot needed to be tightened. This was not intended as a character study, but that's what it wound up being. Few mysteries or thrillers can pull off being character studies.

I feel bad for Marshall, because she was clearly trying. I saw the coding for what she was trying to do, and I wanted it to work. It did not. An excellent example of a character study with thriller elements is "Seven Types of Ambiguity" by Elliot Perlman. I feel like--if she was aware of that book, this one could have been different. I tried to read other books of hers and they did not grab me, but that was for totally different reasons. I want to read works of hers if she writes in the future. I want to like something of hers. ( )
  iszevthere | Jun 25, 2024 |
A long, drawn out and repetitive domestic drama.

Fourteen years ago a wealthy couple, Randolph and Irene Palmer, were gunned down in their beautiful home. Suspicion falls on one of their daughters, Emma, but Juliette and Daphne (her sisters) might also be guilty. No arrests were ever made. All left Arden Hills and made lives elsewhere. Now, however, Emma returns to her childhood home because her husband, Nathan Gates, has lost his job and she is expecting their first child and they need a place to live. Because she shares ownership with the sisters she hasn’t spoken to in years, Emma feels that it is time to reconnect and make decisions. Nathan does not know any details about Emma’s past. Unfortunately, the memories of the night of the murders are murky and no one is quite certain about what really happened.

Does that description sound confusing? The whole narrative flips between then and now and no one is able to do more than guess about what happened and who did what the night of the murders. That and the constant repetition and uncertainty made this whole book quite annoying. I didn’t care for any of the characters - they were all unlikeable as they tried to justify their behaviors through faulty reasoning. The writing style and the melodrama did not appeal. The attempts at twists and shocking revelations missed the mark. In short, I did not like the story.

I listened to the audiobook while reading along in the e-book ARC provided by the publisher and was quite disappointed with the narrator as she attempted to do all the voices with most everyone sounding the same. She definitely had some overly dramatic moments. This would have benefited with a multicast performance.

Overall, not at all to my taste. ( )
  CelticLibrarian | May 30, 2024 |
I had to look this book up too. I got too behind in my reviews and I can't remember anything. The reviews triggered some memories of the book that a girl gets pregnant and her and her husband go back to live in the parent's house where the parents were killed. Everyone in the small town thinks that Emma had killed them. Oh, I think it's coming back. And then her husband dies which was a very thankful ending. I couldn't stand him. And then after that, I remember there were some video cameras involved that captured some things on tape. It made it seem like maybe it was the sisters, but in the end, I think it was the cop in town, who was friends with her father, that did it. I did enjoy this but probably not the best thriller ever. Definitely had me guessing a bit trying to figure out who did it and I thought it may had been the sisters. But turns out, it was just a dirty copy again. Oh, there was a flash drive, I remember the flash drive. It's all coming back. And trying to figure out the sisters whereabouts when they were young and this happened. Made you think it was the sisters for a while. Overall, good read. Maybe I would've rated it higher if I reviewed it right after reading it, but here we are. ( )
  Mav-n-Libby | May 20, 2024 |
Surprisingly, I got the laundry done today. I could not put this book down! ( )
  greenbee | Apr 21, 2024 |
No One Can Know is a fast paced family drama that centers around the murders of Randolph and Irene Palmer where for years, the focus of the investigation has been centered on their then fourteen-year-old daughter, Emma. But when Emma, now in her late 20s, and her husband Nathan, come back to the house where Emma grew up and her parents were killed, secrets, sisters, and salacious gossip crawl out of the woodwork.

Juliette and Daphne, Emma’s sisters, have been estranged from Emma and each other since the murders. Each having told their own version of the night in question to save themselves. When Nathan ends up dead only weeks after being in the Palmer house with Emma, she is again looked at for murder.

There is a lot going on in this one; perhaps a bit too much. I occasionally had a tough time keeping up with the “then” from the “now” and the stories of Daphne, Emma, and Juliette. I appreciate the hard work that went into this one and Kate Alice Marshall did a good job tying up all the loose ends; no plot holes, no lingering questions. But for as much as there was going on, this one fell a little short. ( )
  LyndaWolters1 | Apr 3, 2024 |
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Fiction. Mystery. Suspense. Thriller. HTML:

"Narrator Karissa Vacker ... provides a pitch-perfect performance."- Booklist, on What Lies in the Woods
Three sisters, two murders, and too many secrets to count.

Fourteen years ago, the Palmer sisters—Emma, Juliette, and Daphne—left their home in Arden Hills and never returned. But when Emma discovers she's pregnant and her husband loses his job, she has no option but to return to the house that she and her estranged sisters still own . . . and where their parents were murdered.
Emma has never told anyone what she saw the night her parents died, even when she became the prime suspect. But her presence in the house threatens to uncover secrets that have stayed hidden for years, and the sisters are drawn together once again. As they face their memories of the past, rivalries restart, connections are forged, and, for the first time, Emma starts to ask questions about what really happened that night.
The more Emma learns, the more riddles emerge. And Emma begins to wonder just what her siblings will do to keep the past buried, and whether she did the right thing staying quiet about what was whispered that night: "No one can know."
A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books.

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