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The Necklace

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The clock ticks down in a heart-pounding crusade for justice Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered twenty years ago—and now, at long last, this small-town waitress sets out on a road trip all the way from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the killer's execution. On her journey she discovers shocking new evidence that leads her to suspect the condemned man is innoce The clock ticks down in a heart-pounding crusade for justice Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered twenty years ago—and now, at long last, this small-town waitress sets out on a road trip all the way from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the killer's execution. On her journey she discovers shocking new evidence that leads her to suspect the condemned man is innocent—and the real killer is still free. Even worse, her prime suspect has a young daughter who's at terrible risk. With no money and no time to spare, Susan sets out to uncover the truth before an innocent man gets executed and another little girl is killed. But the FBI refuses to reopen the case. They—and Susan's own mother—believe she's just having an emotional breakdown. Reaching deep, Susan finds an inner strength she never knew she had. With the help of two unlikely allies—a cynical, defiant teenage girl and the retired cop who made the original arrest—Susan battles the FBI to put the real killer behind bars. Will she win justice for the condemned man—and her daughter—at last?


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The clock ticks down in a heart-pounding crusade for justice Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered twenty years ago—and now, at long last, this small-town waitress sets out on a road trip all the way from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the killer's execution. On her journey she discovers shocking new evidence that leads her to suspect the condemned man is innoce The clock ticks down in a heart-pounding crusade for justice Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered twenty years ago—and now, at long last, this small-town waitress sets out on a road trip all the way from Upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the killer's execution. On her journey she discovers shocking new evidence that leads her to suspect the condemned man is innocent—and the real killer is still free. Even worse, her prime suspect has a young daughter who's at terrible risk. With no money and no time to spare, Susan sets out to uncover the truth before an innocent man gets executed and another little girl is killed. But the FBI refuses to reopen the case. They—and Susan's own mother—believe she's just having an emotional breakdown. Reaching deep, Susan finds an inner strength she never knew she had. With the help of two unlikely allies—a cynical, defiant teenage girl and the retired cop who made the original arrest—Susan battles the FBI to put the real killer behind bars. Will she win justice for the condemned man—and her daughter—at last?

30 review for The Necklace

  1. 4 out of 5

    MarilynW

    The Necklace by Matt Witten This story didn't work for me as much as I would have liked. Twenty years ago, Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered, and it's finally time for the execution of her murderer. Susan is making the trip from Upstate New York to North Dakota in her worn out old car, with donated money stuffed into the pockets of her ratty old coat. Sadly she allows road rage to scuttle her trip by car and must move to making the trip by bus. So many of the things that go wrong for Susan o The Necklace by Matt Witten This story didn't work for me as much as I would have liked. Twenty years ago, Susan Lentigo's daughter was murdered, and it's finally time for the execution of her murderer. Susan is making the trip from Upstate New York to North Dakota in her worn out old car, with donated money stuffed into the pockets of her ratty old coat. Sadly she allows road rage to scuttle her trip by car and must move to making the trip by bus. So many of the things that go wrong for Susan on this trip, she attributes to bad luck and I attribute to making bad choices. The mother of a child that was raped and murdered has my sympathy. But Susan is her own worst enemy, foul mouthed (as is everyone around her), impulsive, prone to accuse and attack, quick to blame others, and I soon wanted to be out of this person's destructive orbit. It's only now, twenty years after a man has been sent to prison for the murder of Susan's daughter, that she starts admitting to herself the red flags that she ignored about her family and how the family members interacted with each other. Luckily, Susan is able to find the retired agent who arrested the man on death row and convinces him that the wrong man is in prison. Now, with the clock almost down to the deadline, Susan and the agent rush to save the life of an innocent man and put the spotlight on the real killer. It is the author's notes at the end of the book that I enjoyed the most, telling us how he came up with the idea for this story. If the story had been more plausible and the main character more likeable and less abrasive, I might have been able to throw myself behind it. Publication: September 7th 2021 Thank you to Oceanview Publishing and NetGalley for this ARC.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jayme

    Sorry-this one did not work for me AT ALL. Susan Lentigo and her (very self aware 🙄) SEVEN year old daughter Amy made a beaded necklace together the week that she disappeared. And, she cannot help but recall one of their last conversations... “I am never gonna take this necklace off, Amy said rubbing her dolphin bead. Never.” Susan smiled, Even when you take a bath? “Nope” “Even when you go to sleep?” Amy gave her head a vigorous shake. “Nope. Not even when I die.” Fast forward, twenty years. The t Sorry-this one did not work for me AT ALL. Susan Lentigo and her (very self aware 🙄) SEVEN year old daughter Amy made a beaded necklace together the week that she disappeared. And, she cannot help but recall one of their last conversations... “I am never gonna take this necklace off, Amy said rubbing her dolphin bead. Never.” Susan smiled, Even when you take a bath? “Nope” “Even when you go to sleep?” Amy gave her head a vigorous shake. “Nope. Not even when I die.” Fast forward, twenty years. The town has gathered for a fundraiser, so that Susan can attend the execution of the man convicted for killing her daughter Amy. Everyone is in attendance WEEPING, including three women who were the childhood friends of the little girl. 😳 😳 Yeah-a lot felt unrealistic. As Susan makes her journey, she will begin to have doubts about the condemned man’s guilt-as new evidence is discovered. She will pursue justice with two unlikely allies. The story will flip between PAST and PRESENT until the resolution. Although this sounded intriguing, I found that the author TELLS the story instead of showing it.(as I just demonstrated with the three sentences above) And, the dialogue is stilted and relies on vulgarity. I also found it EASY to figure out where this one was going. Although inspired by a blend of two true crimes-this one just didn’t come to life for me. 😕 Triggers: Child Assault and Death Penalty/execution details Many other reviewers have enjoyed this, so read a sample of reviews to decide if this one is for you! Available September 7, 2021 from Oceanview Publishing. Thank You for my gifted copy in exchange for a candid review!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Bharath

    This is a good story, with a very strong female lead character, is well written and has great pace. There are a few weak areas in the plot – else it would have been just great. Susan plans to attend the execution of the man convicted of assaulting & murdering her seven-year-old daughter Amy, 20 years back. She just about makes ends meet as a waitress but is helped by friends who raise funds for her travel to North Dakota & expenses. Amy was Susan & Danny’s only daughter, and the loss is devastati This is a good story, with a very strong female lead character, is well written and has great pace. There are a few weak areas in the plot – else it would have been just great. Susan plans to attend the execution of the man convicted of assaulting & murdering her seven-year-old daughter Amy, 20 years back. She just about makes ends meet as a waitress but is helped by friends who raise funds for her travel to North Dakota & expenses. Amy was Susan & Danny’s only daughter, and the loss is devastating. Susan tries counselling, and yet struggles to move on. This takes a toll on their marriage as well, as also straining Susan’s relationship with her mom for a time. Susan leaves for North Dakota, but her car breaks down in the early part of her trip. She has to later take several buses to make the trip, and most of the money she had is stolen. At one of the stops, Susan chances upon some material which makes her think that just maybe the man convicted of her daughter’s murder may not be the real culprit. She receives help from a young girl in school - Kyra (a character who features briefly but adds strength to the story) who supports her in pursuing her hunch. As she reaches North Dakota, Susan speaks to the FBI agent (now retired) who oversaw the investigation many years back and who has also come over for the execution, which is just hours away. This is a very interesting story and keeps you hooked. Susan’s determination despite all odds makes for powerful reading. The author mentions in a note at the end of the book of two real stories which form the primary themes of the book – a woman short of money set to make a trip to see the execution of the person who murdered her daughter, and another story of a women’s pursuit to find the real culprit. This story also brings alive the issues which exist in the law enforcement and justice systems the world over, and the crying need for reform. The main issue is a weakness in the plot – what arouses Susan’s suspicion and the events in the last few pages. Nevertheless, a book I very much recommend – it is a very engrossing read. My rating: 4.25 / 5. Thanks to Netgalley, the publisher and the author for a free electronic review copy.

  4. 4 out of 5

    L.A.

    The Necklace is based on a disturbing, chilling event the author reveals in the foothills of the Adirondacks, names and circumstances are different, but the loss of a child at the hands of a rapist and murderer defines this story. Without stories as these, we can sink our head in the sand as if it doesn’t exist, but the author brought out the anger of a desperate mom to brand the hurt many share. The language was explicit and at times unbearable, but an honest reaction I’m sure. With a corrupt c The Necklace is based on a disturbing, chilling event the author reveals in the foothills of the Adirondacks, names and circumstances are different, but the loss of a child at the hands of a rapist and murderer defines this story. Without stories as these, we can sink our head in the sand as if it doesn’t exist, but the author brought out the anger of a desperate mom to brand the hurt many share. The language was explicit and at times unbearable, but an honest reaction I’m sure. With a corrupt criminal justice system, we witness an innocent man convicted while a murderer runs among us. As The mother, Susan, travels to watch the killer’s execution 20 years after the gruesome death of her 7 year old daughter, she comes to grip with her hurt and pain to unveil the truth that he may be innocent. With time against her and a multitude of roadblocks, she meets with the detective that helped convict him to clear his name. The title is remnant of a little girl at the beginning of the story excited about her shopping excursion with her mom to create a necklace of beads. The necklace is a key element to the story’s plot, so I won’t give it away. It’s slow to start, but the alternating past and present leads you less than perfectly to the end. Thanks NetGalley for this ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)

    3.5 stars Imagine the rage you would feel if a person strangled and raped your young daughter. You would want him to receive his just desserts, as capital punishment might be exactly what you think you need in order to placate somewhat the hurt and emptiness of your heart. Susan Lentigo, is just such a mother. She sat through the trial of the accused who confessed, with anger burning through her so that when the conviction came down, she stood before the judge and demanded the death penalty, inten 3.5 stars Imagine the rage you would feel if a person strangled and raped your young daughter. You would want him to receive his just desserts, as capital punishment might be exactly what you think you need in order to placate somewhat the hurt and emptiness of your heart. Susan Lentigo, is just such a mother. She sat through the trial of the accused who confessed, with anger burning through her so that when the conviction came down, she stood before the judge and demanded the death penalty, intending some day to sit front and center as the killer was put to death. Twenty years later, she has her wish. However, as Susan travels from upstate New York to North Dakota on a number of buses, she begins to wonder and question if they murderer is truly the one who did it. It all hangs on a necklace her daughter loved and wore, a necklace made by Susan and her daughter, a necklace that was never found. Susan is determined to know the truth and in the end save a convicted man from death. She courageously enlists the aid of a number of people, a rebellious teenage girl and an ex policeman who worked on the case. The clock ticks down towards the execution as Susan battles both the clock and others to try to save the life of a man she knows is innocent as she discovers the horrible truth of her daughter's death. This was an intense but easy read as the pages flew in this reader's hope that eventually justice would be served. Thank you to Matt Witten, Oceanview Publishing, and NetGalley for a copy of this story that was published on September 7, 2021.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tamar...playing hooky for a few hours today

    Susan Lentigo and her seven-year old daughter, Amy, are driving home to Glens Falls, New York, in Susan’s Dodge Dart. They stop at Baskin Robbins for sloppy ice cream cones after buying beads in the shop next door. Amy chose a hundred beads to make a necklace like her friend has. She chose a purple dolphin and a pink duck, and other colorful beads, which she strings for a necklace with Susan’s help. Not long afterwards, Susan has promised to take over a shift at Molly’s Diner, where she works. H Susan Lentigo and her seven-year old daughter, Amy, are driving home to Glens Falls, New York, in Susan’s Dodge Dart. They stop at Baskin Robbins for sloppy ice cream cones after buying beads in the shop next door. Amy chose a hundred beads to make a necklace like her friend has. She chose a purple dolphin and a pink duck, and other colorful beads, which she strings for a necklace with Susan’s help. Not long afterwards, Susan has promised to take over a shift at Molly’s Diner, where she works. Her husband, Danny, who is a realtor, tells her that he has an important house-showing and he won’t be able to pick up Amy from school. Susan calls her flighty mother, Lenora, against her better judgment since Amy claims that one of Lenora’s boyfriends made her “uncomfortable”, touching her cheek and calling her pretty baby. (OK, my skin is crawling, how about yours?) Lenora is angry that Susan called her out on this and asked her to keep the BF away from her daughter, but she agrees to pick up Amy anyway. Did I say that Lenora was flighty? Well, on the day Lenora agreed to pick up Amy, she calls Susan at home and leaves a message on her answering machine, saying that she forgot she has plans and she won’t be able to pick up Amy from school, after-all. Susan never got the message and Lenora never checked to make sure her message was received. Amy was never again seen alive. Twenty years later, Susan is in the same broken-down Dodge Dart, held together with spit and glue, heading to a Federal Penitentiary in North Dakota to witness the Execution of the man convicted of raping and murdering her daughter. She is still working at Molly’s diner (now run by her daughter). The night before her trip the entire town showed up at the local Crow Bar, to pass the hat around. It was Amy Lentigo Night, where the revenue from all the food and drinks was devoted to contributing toward Susan’s trip to ND. Danny is no longer in the picture. He and Susan divorced a year after Amy disappeared. Danny was not much of a success when he was married to Susan, but he moved to another town and developed a successful realty company. He is now remarried and has two children. Susan was physiologically unable to bear more children after she had Amy, and she was decidedly bitter at how easily Danny could move on and forget his daughter. The couple were no longer in touch, but Susan had tried calling on several occasions, and again before the Execution, to see if he would be there. Danny ignored her calls, for the most part, claiming he had moved on. Susan cannot get a break. Despite the whole town showing up and contributing hard cash for her journey, her car dies shortly after starting out, she can barely scrape together the money to purchase a bus ticket to take the 1500 mile, four-day bus ride to North Dakota. Before she even boards the bus, she is robbed and is left with only spare change and a bag full of snacks that she packed for the ride up. The bus makes a stop in Tamarack and Susan sees a storefront window of Tamarack Realty with a large photo of Danny in the window. She disembarks and decides to catch the next bus out on her pre-purchased route, the next morning. When she goes to his office, she is not warmly received and she makes a shocking discovery that will rock her and radically alters the way she reacts for the rest of the novel (no spoilers here, you will have to read the book). The Necklace is a riveting, page-flipping thriller, but a difficult read. The language and descriptions of the crime, as set forth in the testimony and confession of the man convicted of the deeds, are graphic and disturbing. There is also a very disturbing tour of the prison and death row, and a detailed explanation of the Execution procedures. I liked very few of the characters in this novel, the bereaved mother not being one of them. It is, however, realistic that her bitterness would have shrunken her heart and made her behavior, at times, prickly and coarse. This book has several surprising twists and a suspenseful cliffhanger ending, that is not resolved until practically the last page of the novel. The epilogue was not necessary, but I did enjoy another opportunity to cheer for one particular young character, who went out on a limb for Susan. Thank you NetGalley and Oceanview Publishing for the opportunity to read and review an ARC of this excellent book by Matt Witten.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Pat

    Susan Lentigo’s young daughter, Amy, was horribly attacked and killed 20 years ago. In the present time she is still in the same house and the same minimum wage job. Her husband divorced her years ago but she is trying to get enough money together to travel from upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the execution of the man convicted of her daughter’s murder. Along the way though things come to light that cast a tiny bit of doubt on the guilt of the condemned man. Naturally Susan has to do Susan Lentigo’s young daughter, Amy, was horribly attacked and killed 20 years ago. In the present time she is still in the same house and the same minimum wage job. Her husband divorced her years ago but she is trying to get enough money together to travel from upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the execution of the man convicted of her daughter’s murder. Along the way though things come to light that cast a tiny bit of doubt on the guilt of the condemned man. Naturally Susan has to do all she can to ensure an innocent man is not put to death and have the guilty party walk free. From the title it is safe to assume that a necklace is involved and that was the first big problem for me. Amy and her mum made the necklace together shortly before the girl’s death. This necklace turns up again. And Susan finds a couple of unlikely allies in her quest for the truth. I made necklaces with my kids and also made ‘grown-up’ ones to sell. The necklace described, and pictured on the cover, is, well a bit of plastic rubbish and I struggle to believe it would become material in a case. The whole epic journey of Susan’s without any money didn’t really work for me either. From my perspective - who goes to see a human ‘put down’? I thought the premise had potential, especially as it was based on a couple of true crime cases. But Susan’s story and journey and the whole necklace thing didn’t really work for me. I had some sympathy for Susan, but only some. She really didn’t make things easy for herself. I know what happened is every parent’s worst nightmare but I’m not sure I would have done it the way she did. Apart from anything else, the plot was patently predictable which did spoil it a little for me. If the author produced a more nuanced book, I would be keen to read it. Thanks to Netgalley and Oceanview Publishing for the much appreciated ARC which I reviewed voluntarily and honestly.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Carole

    The Necklace by Matt Witten has left me astounded and breathless and although the novel deals with extremely difficult subject matter, it is well-worth the time to read it. The story alternates between two periods of time: twenty years ago when Susan Lentigo’s daughter is murdered and in the present day when she goes on a road trip from New York and North Dakota to witness the execution of the convicted murderer. Not much more can be revealed about the content so you must read the book yourself The Necklace by Matt Witten has left me astounded and breathless and although the novel deals with extremely difficult subject matter, it is well-worth the time to read it. The story alternates between two periods of time: twenty years ago when Susan Lentigo’s daughter is murdered and in the present day when she goes on a road trip from New York and North Dakota to witness the execution of the convicted murderer. Not much more can be revealed about the content so you must read the book yourself to discover a storyline like no other. The tension increases chapter by chapter. The author, Matt Witten, is a screenwriter and TV writer and therefore it would be easy to imagine this as a movie. The characters are good and bad and some both at the same time. They are interesting, sympathetic, cruel and devoted, providing the reader with a broad range of emotions. And, even when the reader begins to grasp the denouement of the mystery, there are unexpected developments galore. The Necklace will remain as one of my favorite mysteries this year. I look forward to reading more books by this author. Highly recommended. Thank you to Oceanview Publishing, NetGalley and the author for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn Walsh

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Thank you, NetGalley and author Matt Witten, for the opportunity to read an early electronic copy of this book in return for an honest review. I had difficulty at first relating to the characters, but I am glad I kept reading. I understood Susan's anger and anguish on an intellectual level. She appears to be in continuous turmoil due to the horrific, vile rape and murder of her 7-year-old daughter, Amy, twenty years earlier. Her ever-simmering rage has prevented her from moving along in life. H Thank you, NetGalley and author Matt Witten, for the opportunity to read an early electronic copy of this book in return for an honest review. I had difficulty at first relating to the characters, but I am glad I kept reading. I understood Susan's anger and anguish on an intellectual level. She appears to be in continuous turmoil due to the horrific, vile rape and murder of her 7-year-old daughter, Amy, twenty years earlier. Her ever-simmering rage has prevented her from moving along in life. However, I regret I failed to engage emotionally with her well-deserved feelings until close to the conclusion. Frequent outbursts of swearing and vile language were a distraction. It seemed much of the bad language was for effect, to emphasize her rage at the condemned man she calls "The Monster." The bad language distanced me from the emotions underneath. The time has come for her to witness the execution of "The Monster" almost 1,500 miles distant. She hopes to finally get some sense of closure and revenge. The man on death row was sentenced to die by lethal injection, demanded by Susan at his trial 20 years ago. He confessed to the crime after intense interrogation but then recanted. This was his first charge as a pedophile. He stated that he was attracted to Amy when seeing her at a distance wearing a cheap homemade necklace. This attraction and motive seemed preposterous, even from a psychopathic pedophile. Susan and Amy crafted the necklace with coloured animal-shaped beads shortly before her murder. This necklace was believed to be taken as a trophy and hidden by her killer after the murder. It was never found. Susan's husband left her shortly after the tragedy, saying he could no longer cope with her profound depression. He now has a new wife and family. Susan must travel cross-country on buses with many stops and transfers along the way. She has little financial means, and friends staged fundraising to help her on the long journey to the execution. She displayed a tendency to be rude to people when things did not go her way. She also makes snap judgements about people and lay blame where it may not be deserved. She had already accused one of her mother's boyfriends of being a pedophile and the murderer, but then the man soon to receive the death penalty was caught and charged with the crime. As she travels, Susan begins to show an inner reserve of strength, resourcefulness, and resilience. Her cash is lost or stolen, causing her to be tired and hungry for most of her journey. She receives many acts of kindness and helpfulness along the way and meets some interesting and supportive people. She obtains a clue that makes her doubt the guilt of the man soon to be executed. She is in shock that she may have played a part in sending an innocent man to prison for 20 years, and now his death is imminent. Also, she is shattered by the identity of the person she believes is truly guilty. Susan contacts a retired FBI agent who was sympathetic to her tragedy when Amy was murdered. He is also travelling to attend the execution of the man he helped send to prison years before. Susan’s clue makes him doubt the conviction. The ex-FBI agent sends it for DNA analysis, but the testing is unsuccessful. When they arrive at the prison to view the execution, the pace and suspense had me emotional and riveted to the page. The conclusion was gripping and satisfying.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    The Necklace is a compelling story about a woman who plans to travel from upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the execution of the man found guilty of killing her daughter, Amy, 20 years previously. She encounters some very bad luck during her journey and comes to a shocking realization about what she has believed for all those years. The book consisted of flashbacks to the time of Amy's death until we had the entire story as well as chronicling Susan's journey. Although I found some inc The Necklace is a compelling story about a woman who plans to travel from upstate New York to North Dakota to witness the execution of the man found guilty of killing her daughter, Amy, 20 years previously. She encounters some very bad luck during her journey and comes to a shocking realization about what she has believed for all those years. The book consisted of flashbacks to the time of Amy's death until we had the entire story as well as chronicling Susan's journey. Although I found some incidents outside the realm of possibility, it was a pleasure to witness Susan's resilience in the face of all the roadblocks. There were many likeable and some not-so-likeable characters in the book and it was a well-paced read. I recommend the book but readers should be aware that there is reference to sexual assault of a child. This was my second read courtesy of NetGalley and my first courtesy of Oceanview Publishing for which I'm extremely grateful.

  11. 5 out of 5

    l a u r a

    4/5 :) FYI Everything I didn't pick on mention was either good or very good. :) Personally, I thought the beginning of the book was a little slow, too tragic and a little hard to read about. Although that's probably just the cruel reality… Even though the action comes in later in the book, it doesn't stop once it's here. It keeps you wanting more and more until the very end. I also thought something was going to happen with Marla and Sophie because I felt like mentioning them that one time was going 4/5 :) FYI Everything I didn't pick on mention was either good or very good. :) Personally, I thought the beginning of the book was a little slow, too tragic and a little hard to read about. Although that's probably just the cruel reality… Even though the action comes in later in the book, it doesn't stop once it's here. It keeps you wanting more and more until the very end. I also thought something was going to happen with Marla and Sophie because I felt like mentioning them that one time was going to have more purpose. I kept waiting for them to pop up, but I guess that’s the only time they’d ever see each other… To be perfectly honest, the ending was pretty predictable if you thought of it enough… Maybe I read too many mysteries, but it wasn’t as much of a twist I would’ve liked it to be. I almost gave up my theory in the middle but let’s pretend I was right the whole time. :) I kind of wanted to hear from the killer because it’ll be interesting to see why he did it and why her? In my opinion, chapter 42 was the absolute best. Seriously. And chapter 43 makes this book complete. Oh! And let's not forget the perfect epilogue too! There's just some mature content to look out for (but this is adult fiction, so I guess that's pretty self-explanatory…) 【Overall, a very good book with some minor details that could be better. I would definitely recommend it to all the thriller and mystery lovers! 】 (view spoiler)[but seriously (view spoiler)[Danny, (hide spoiler)] why would you carry the necklace with you?? i thought you were supposed to be smart😤 (hide spoiler)] 01/26/21 ━━━━━━━━━━━༻༻❁༺༺━━━━━━━━━━━ Then she turns to the judge. “But life in prison isn’t enough for this man. I demand that he be sentenced to death!” She turns back to the Monster and says, “And I pray your execution will be slow and painful.” (75) Y.E.S. 01/25/21 ━━━━━━━━━━━༻༻❁༺༺━━━━━━━━━━━ She balled her hands into fists. The Monster had been there when Amy drew her last breath. Now Susan would be there while he breathed his last. She would put her face up close to the window so the last thing he saw in this life was her, and she would watch him die. (9) off to a good start~ (i think) 01/23/21

  12. 5 out of 5

    Helen Power

    The Necklace is a fast-paced thriller that you won’t be able to put down. The story is told from the point of view of Susan, a woman whose seven-year-old daughter was brutally murdered twenty years ago. We get two timelines--one set twenty years ago, when the horrible crime occurred. The second timeline is present day, when the man put behind bars for killing her child is just days away from being executed. Susan has scrounged up just enough money to travel to the execution. This is the day t The Necklace is a fast-paced thriller that you won’t be able to put down. The story is told from the point of view of Susan, a woman whose seven-year-old daughter was brutally murdered twenty years ago. We get two timelines--one set twenty years ago, when the horrible crime occurred. The second timeline is present day, when the man put behind bars for killing her child is just days away from being executed. Susan has scrounged up just enough money to travel to the execution. This is the day that she’s waited for for twenty years. She should be ecstatic. She should be happy to finally be getting the closure she craves. But a simple piece of evidence sends her reeling. Is it possible that the man who’s being executed in mere days is not guilty? This story is incredibly fast paced. I could easily tell that the author is ordinarily a writer for TV. The writing style is very direct--with little flowery language or description to bog down the prose. I’m a fast reader, but I can say that any other reader would also be compelled to finish this in one sitting. The novel reads a little like a James Patterson novel--you can’t help but think “One more chapter!” and before you know it, you’re at the climax of the book and there’s no way you’re stopping now. This book deals with some very dark and dreary subject matter, but it isn’t a dark and dreary book. Fortunately, because of the writing style, we don’t get caught up too much in Susan’s thoughts. This could easily be a heavy and depressing read, because what’s more depressing than following a heroine whose daughter was brutally killed, her husband left her, and she hasn’t been able to move on in twenty years? Despite all this, Susan has a sense of direction. At first, Susan is focused on getting to the execution. Then, she’s pinpointed all her energy on finding the truth. There isn’t much time for introspection and dark existential musings, and I was happy about that. There’s a hopeful note that lingers throughout the narrative, which is a unique approach to an original storyline. The book is called “The Necklace”, because Susan had made a beaded necklace with her daughter just days before her murder. The necklace was never found. This simple piece of jewellery plays a key part of the plot. This book has quite a few twists, one or two of them had me gasp almost comically. I recommend this book to those looking for a fast-paced thriller that they can devour in an evening. *Thank you to the publisher, Netgalley, and the author for the ebook to review* This review appeared first on https://powerlibrarian.wordpress.com/ Instagram | Blog | Website | Twitter My 2021 Reading Challenge

  13. 4 out of 5

    Anastacia Reads Stuff

    This book gives me a little of everything I love in a thriller. Family drama and dysfunctional relationships, corrupt criminal justice systems, mystery and suspense. The book starts with the main character raising money to travel to North Dakota where she will witness the execution of the man who killed her young daughter years before. But events leading up to the execution leave her wondering if he is really guilty. The story is told in both present time and past leading up to the event. I real This book gives me a little of everything I love in a thriller. Family drama and dysfunctional relationships, corrupt criminal justice systems, mystery and suspense. The book starts with the main character raising money to travel to North Dakota where she will witness the execution of the man who killed her young daughter years before. But events leading up to the execution leave her wondering if he is really guilty. The story is told in both present time and past leading up to the event. I really enjoyed this. The beginning started off a little slow but once the storyline picked up I couldn't put it down. It was the type of book that's makes it so you have to know what happens next. There are some trigger warnings for child abuse, graphic violence, and descriptions of public execution. Thank you NetGalley and Ocean View Publishing for the chance to read this book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Whispering Stories

    Book Reviewed on www.whisperingstories.com Despite the theme of this book, the opening paragraph going straight into a charity raising event organised by the local Church to fund Susan Lentigo’s travel to North Dakota to witness her daughter, Amy’s killer’s execution on death row, is a strong hook and from then on I could not put this book down. Twenty years ago, Susan Lentigo’s seven-year-old daughter was raped and murdered. Having found and convicted the person responsible, FBI Agent Pappas was Book Reviewed on www.whisperingstories.com Despite the theme of this book, the opening paragraph going straight into a charity raising event organised by the local Church to fund Susan Lentigo’s travel to North Dakota to witness her daughter, Amy’s killer’s execution on death row, is a strong hook and from then on I could not put this book down. Twenty years ago, Susan Lentigo’s seven-year-old daughter was raped and murdered. Having found and convicted the person responsible, FBI Agent Pappas was sure, following a confession, that they had got the right man. Susan has lived with the worst atrocity that any parent could ever experience, and the reminder is still in every one of her waking thoughts. The novel is written so passionately showing the rawness of her emotions past and present. The chapter describing the night that Amy went missing is truly powerful. You can feel the anticipation and the build-up in Susan, knowing that as a parent, you would have experienced every single one of the emotions and the connection you feel for her and what she has and is still going through. She’s a strong character and her flaws are limitless but that’s what made me love the character and throw myself into her journey. The book is very fast paced and despite knowing the loss that will always be there, Susan is so fair and kind and loveable that you just want something positive to happen to her. The relationship that she has clearly built with her mother despite being utterly let down by her after Amy’s abduction is really very heart-warming as is the relationship that she has with Agent Pappas and Kyra, a teenage drop-out who helps her during her journey to North Dakota. To say I couldn’t put this book down is an understatement because despite the prospect of knowing that when the author goes back in time, and therefore having to be back to the raw loss of Amy, I just wanted to know what was going to happen next. The twist at Susan’s realisation that perhaps the man who was awaiting execution may not be responsible and the identity of the person who is, is brilliant and I certainly didn’t see that coming. The writing throughout is exquisite, full of emotion and probably one of the most powerful stories I have read in a very long while. An absolute must read. I loved it.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lou

    The Necklace is a riveting and propulsive standalone thriller set in Lake Luzerne, Warren County, New York. Alternating between the past and the present, the novel follows protagonist Susan Lentigo, a waitress from Glens Falls, N.Y., whose 7-year-old daughter, Amy, was brutally raped and strangled to death in a murder that was seemingly committed by a sexual predator twenty years ago. Curt Jansen, during a police interrogation, had confessed to killing Amy; he was a vagrant engaged in a transien The Necklace is a riveting and propulsive standalone thriller set in Lake Luzerne, Warren County, New York. Alternating between the past and the present, the novel follows protagonist Susan Lentigo, a waitress from Glens Falls, N.Y., whose 7-year-old daughter, Amy, was brutally raped and strangled to death in a murder that was seemingly committed by a sexual predator twenty years ago. Curt Jansen, during a police interrogation, had confessed to killing Amy; he was a vagrant engaged in a transient way of life and had prior convictions on his criminal record, however, a short time before his trial could begin he had recanted his statement. Nevertheless, when it reached trial he was convicted and sentenced to death. He has been sitting on death row awaiting execution for two decades and now Susan finally has a date to see the monster she believes murdered her innocent young daughter in cold blood be sent straight to hell via lethal injection. Still as devastated as she was when it initially happened, Susan, with help from the community, scrapes together the funds to travel from Lake Luzerne to North Dakota to view the killer’s execution. Along the harrowing journey, though, she discovers evidence that makes her doubt that the convicted man was the murderer. He had claimed he could see Amy’s necklace from where he was standing, but it simply wasn't possible making Susan question his guilt and whether the wrong man is about to be executed. Worse yet, she suspects that the killer is still out there. This is a compelling and enthralling thriller about a desperate search for the truth and one mother’s attempts to ensure the correct person is to be punished for her daughter’s death. It's a fast-paced, heart-pounding crusade for justice, and Susan must fight tooth and nail to make the FBI receptive to her evidence. It's a race against the clock with the possibility of another innocent life at stake and the excitement, danger, drama and thrills just keep coming. It's full of adeptly plotted twists and turns that pull you one way and then another, so you never can completely envisage how the story is likely to end. This affecting thriller was inspired by a case Witten read about in a newspaper article. A breathless, punchy read, this is a tense and traumatic tale I highly recommend.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

    Twenty years after the murder of her daughter, the man who murdered her seven-year-old daughter will be put to death. Susan is on her way to the execution and begins to panic because something she saw may prove that this man is innocent and the real killer is still out there. Could she be correct, though? All the evidence pointed to him, so how could the wrong man have been in jail all these years? Susan did not have a smooth trip so maybe she is just imagining what she saw. Her money was stolen, h Twenty years after the murder of her daughter, the man who murdered her seven-year-old daughter will be put to death. Susan is on her way to the execution and begins to panic because something she saw may prove that this man is innocent and the real killer is still out there. Could she be correct, though? All the evidence pointed to him, so how could the wrong man have been in jail all these years? Susan did not have a smooth trip so maybe she is just imagining what she saw. Her money was stolen, her car broke down, and she isn't sure she will make it in time to save this man. We re-live the nightmare of the trial as well as present day. Mr. Witten’s writing style flowed smoothly, and the story line kept my interest even though the book was tense with some upsetting situations. You will be with Susan and feel her anxiety and her questioning herself about if she is right. A nice twist at the end. 5/5 This book was given to me by the author via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Gonsalves

    The Necklace was a good book with a plotline I haven't read before. This book has borrowed elements from a true crime which makes it all the more chilling!The start & end of the book was thrilling & had me biting my nails with every chapter progress. However, the chapters in between felt dragged out & focusses more on the journey of the character Susan than on the crime itself. While some may like this approach the book took, I personally would have loved to see the spotlight on the case, forens The Necklace was a good book with a plotline I haven't read before. This book has borrowed elements from a true crime which makes it all the more chilling!The start & end of the book was thrilling & had me biting my nails with every chapter progress. However, the chapters in between felt dragged out & focusses more on the journey of the character Susan than on the crime itself. While some may like this approach the book took, I personally would have loved to see the spotlight on the case, forensics, more of her repressed memories & how all those tie in with the murder. The ending of the book was absolutely crazy tense. I was happy with the outcome but it would have been great of the author would circle back to the criminal & why they really did what they did & how exactly they possibly got away with it for so damn long. The beauty for me would have been in the details. Nonetheless, I enjoyed reading this book. Thank you NetGalley, Oceanview Publishing & Matt Witten for an arc!

  18. 4 out of 5

    The Cats’ Mother

    The Necklace is a contemporary suspense novel based on a couple of real life cases, about a woman travelling to witness the execution of the man who killed her daughter twenty years earlier - or did he? I requested it after seeing an enthusiastic review in one of my NetGalley groups, but should have checked with my like-minded GoodReads buddies first, as I normally do. It is competently written, and I did want to get to the end to find out what happened, but several issues impaired my enjoyment The Necklace is a contemporary suspense novel based on a couple of real life cases, about a woman travelling to witness the execution of the man who killed her daughter twenty years earlier - or did he? I requested it after seeing an enthusiastic review in one of my NetGalley groups, but should have checked with my like-minded GoodReads buddies first, as I normally do. It is competently written, and I did want to get to the end to find out what happened, but several issues impaired my enjoyment and mean it’s firmly in the 3-star “okay not great” category. Susan Lentigo is a middle-aged divorcée who works in a diner in a small town in New York State and is still grieving the loss of her only child, seven year old Amy, who was raped and murdered. Now the killer is scheduled to die, and Susan sets off on a cross-country pilgrimage to North Dakota, to witness the execution. Then a series of mishaps leads her to a piece of evidence which has her questioning everything, and a race against time to prevent a terrible miscarriage of justice. The author is new to me and from the afterword, lives in the kind of community depicted here, so I have to assume that the attitudes, behaviours and language here are true to life, no matter how unbelievable they seem to someone who has never lived in a country with the death penalty in use. This opens with Susan attending a fund-raising party to allow her to travel there, with all her friends, family & colleagues cheerfully drinking, dancing and joking about the execution, and seemingly forgetting that a little girl died horribly. This almost medieval approach continues throughout the book, as various characters gleefully tell Susan to enjoy her trip as if it’s some kind of holiday - even including the prison staff organising the lethal injection, in a way I found highly distasteful. And the scene where Susan walks past the cells of other death row inmates close enough to be spat on? Seriously? The flashback chapters were well done as we first meet Susan and Amy and see their closeness, then experience Susan’s rising panic from the moment her daughter is reported missing. Her grief and the subsequent demise of her marriage were believable, but her actions once she starts her journey much less so. I suppose she’s led a sheltered life but to set off alone in a battered old car with nothing but pocketfuls of cash, which she brings out in public, is asking for trouble. The way she yells and swears at, is rude to or even shoves anyone who doesn’t immediately agree with her made her very difficult to like, despite my initial sympathy. About halfway through, the plot takes a turn towards a disappointingly overused trope - I can’t say more without spoilers but from then on the outcome was rather predictable. The author is a TV writer and it very much shows in the down-to-the-wire denouement. I think this book would appeal most to people who don’t read a lot of thrillers, so won’t see the twists coming. It’s a fairly quick read in spite of the cross country travel dragging things out. There are references to child abuse but we don’t “see” the murder happening. There’s a lot of swearing, in case that bothers you. I didn’t like the main character, who brought much of her misfortune after the murder upon herself - and don’t get me started on her promiscuous mother and her unforgivable selfishness. I wasn’t sure if she was supposed to be comic relief as she carts her oxygen cylinder from date to date. I did however like feisty teenager Kyra, and the cover, which shows the titular plastic necklace at the centre of the plot - it is at least different from all the generic images that currently adorn covers in this genre. Thanks to NetGalley and Oceanview publishing for the ARC. I am posting this honest review voluntarily. The Necklace is published on September 7th.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Apoorva

    Trigger Warnings: Death of a minor girl, abuse. To begin with, I must say that this novel actually managed to overwhelm me in bits & pieces. Some transpired to be too interesting, while some didn't make much sense. The end, where all the built-up sentiments were supposed to pop, didn't actually blast for me. The peak simply arrived & left, offering no huge impression at all. The account is packed with emotions & parents with little kids (particularly daughters) are sure to get extra moved. The pro Trigger Warnings: Death of a minor girl, abuse. To begin with, I must say that this novel actually managed to overwhelm me in bits & pieces. Some transpired to be too interesting, while some didn't make much sense. The end, where all the built-up sentiments were supposed to pop, didn't actually blast for me. The peak simply arrived & left, offering no huge impression at all. The account is packed with emotions & parents with little kids (particularly daughters) are sure to get extra moved. The protagonist's trip assuredly wasn't easy & I had tears when reading most of the touching pieces. The past-present story-narration was a great concept by the writer & it had me hooked. The novel held a great pace from the start, explaining in detail the surroundings, character's styles & all that's needed in a fiction thriller/suspense. The book's title is quite apt, representing the crux of the tale. It is not only the lead who's on a ride in quest of truth; the author makes sure that you too are traveling beside her, cruising by all her emotions. I want to thank NetGalley, publisher Oceanview Publishing & author Matt Witten for an e-ARC of this title in exchange for my review.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    (Content Warning: Sexual Assault, Child Abuse) I went into reading The Necklace knowing nothing about the book and ended up finishing it in 6 hours (currently writing this review at midnight). I quite literally could not put it down. This book is a ride from start to finish, that especially picks up x100 during the second half. Although you can guess or surmise the ending easier than the usual *twist out of left field in the last ten pages* format that books of this genre sometimes follow, the wr (Content Warning: Sexual Assault, Child Abuse) I went into reading The Necklace knowing nothing about the book and ended up finishing it in 6 hours (currently writing this review at midnight). I quite literally could not put it down. This book is a ride from start to finish, that especially picks up x100 during the second half. Although you can guess or surmise the ending easier than the usual *twist out of left field in the last ten pages* format that books of this genre sometimes follow, the writing has the reader changing beliefs every chapter, And I liked solving the crime alongside the main character. All in all, I was captured by the book, the settings, and the characters. The only reason it's not a 5 rating is because the subject matter is and gets very dark, which isn't for me. At times, it felt too heavy and hard to read and that feeling can take you out of story.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mackey

    My emotions were all over the place with this book. There were times I was angry, times I was suspicious and times I wanted to walk away. I think that might the sign of a good author. The book is loosely based on some true stories and it makes a riveting tale of its own. You truly do not know the truth or how it will end until the final pages of the book. No "gotcha" twists, it's just how the story plays out. This is a new to me author but, obviously, his past works are well documented and he's My emotions were all over the place with this book. There were times I was angry, times I was suspicious and times I wanted to walk away. I think that might the sign of a good author. The book is loosely based on some true stories and it makes a riveting tale of its own. You truly do not know the truth or how it will end until the final pages of the book. No "gotcha" twists, it's just how the story plays out. This is a new to me author but, obviously, his past works are well documented and he's quite good at what he does. If you haven't read this one, I encourage you to do so.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Jasmine Chatty.Chapters

    Thank you SO much Oceanview Publishing for providing me with this e-ARC in exchange for an honest review! WOW. JUST. WOW. This book was one heck of a ride. Deeply disturbing. Bone chilling. Jaw dropping. The Necklace is a quick paced page turner that hooks you in right from the start. Some parts were really hard to read due to the vulgarity of some scenes but this is now a top murder mystery / thriller book on my shelf for sure! Some trigger warnings include : death of a child, execution and rape Thank you SO much Oceanview Publishing for providing me with this e-ARC in exchange for an honest review! WOW. JUST. WOW. This book was one heck of a ride. Deeply disturbing. Bone chilling. Jaw dropping. The Necklace is a quick paced page turner that hooks you in right from the start. Some parts were really hard to read due to the vulgarity of some scenes but this is now a top murder mystery / thriller book on my shelf for sure! Some trigger warnings include : death of a child, execution and rape - so reader beware! The author jumps from past to present telling the story of Susan Lentigo's daughter who was murdered 20 years ago. On her way to the murderers execution she discovers some new evidence and is questioning what really happened on the darkest day of her life. Will justice ever be served? What's even more shocking about this story, which I didn't know until I read the author's note at the end, was that it is based off of a true story! After I finished the book I was up way too late reading the true story articles online. So crazy! The true story was also made into a documentary that is streams on Hulu! ALSO this book is optioned to be made into a fictional movie - with Leonardo DiCaprio attached as the producer! EEEEEK! Highly recommend this one if you are looking for a dark and disturbing murder mystery for sure! So mark your calendar, this book comes out September 6th, 2021!

  23. 5 out of 5

    ... Lost In Bookland...

    If you are looking for a book that will push you out of your comfort zone, a book that will haunt you and take you on a heartbreaking journey, through a whirlwind of emotions that will slowly tear pieces from your soul, then you should not miss this riveting, page-flipping thriller. Twenty years of the horrible nightmare, one second they are enjoying their time together, the next one she has lost her baby forever... Twenty years spent in unbearable pain, and powerless to continue, twenty years, If you are looking for a book that will push you out of your comfort zone, a book that will haunt you and take you on a heartbreaking journey, through a whirlwind of emotions that will slowly tear pieces from your soul, then you should not miss this riveting, page-flipping thriller. Twenty years of the horrible nightmare, one second they are enjoying their time together, the next one she has lost her baby forever... Twenty years spent in unbearable pain, and powerless to continue, twenty years, but the end is almost here, ....... The man who murdered her seven-year-old daughter will be put to death... But what will happen when Susan sees something that offers a completely different light on things? What if the convict is innocent and someone else enjoys freedom? What is the right answer to everything? This book contains all the elements of an extraordinary thriller: a really solid story, with a very strong female lead character, well-written plot, and a great pace, with perfectly woven elements of family drama and dysfunctional relationships, as well as the corrupt criminal justice systems. Admittedly, there are a few incidents outside the realm of possibility, but still, this is an exceptional read that will not let you sleep until you read the last page.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Sherri Thacker

    I was not expecting The Necklace to be anything that it was. A mother’s worst nightmare comes true when her daughter is murdered and her killer is sentenced to death. 20 years go by and the mother wants to drive across the US to see the killer get justice. Only is he really the killer? So many questions left unsolved. She thought he was all those years but now starts to question his innocence. This was a very fast reading story and it did have a lot of hard issues to read but I just kept going a I was not expecting The Necklace to be anything that it was. A mother’s worst nightmare comes true when her daughter is murdered and her killer is sentenced to death. 20 years go by and the mother wants to drive across the US to see the killer get justice. Only is he really the killer? So many questions left unsolved. She thought he was all those years but now starts to question his innocence. This was a very fast reading story and it did have a lot of hard issues to read but I just kept going as I wanted to see how it was going to end. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this early release in exchange for my honest review.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lee Goldberg

    The Necklace’s brave, truly unforgettable heroine grabbed my heart . . . This compelling, powerful read will stay with you long after you've turned the final page The Necklace’s brave, truly unforgettable heroine grabbed my heart . . . This compelling, powerful read will stay with you long after you've turned the final page

  26. 4 out of 5

    3 no 7

    “The Necklace” is Susan Lentigo’s story from start to finish. The narrative alternates between Lentigo’s current dilemmas and the vicious events from twenty years ago. Lentigo’s daughter was brutally murdered, and that trauma continues to haunt her. She is on her way to witness the execution of the monster who murdered her child. Lentigo is a troubled character; it is a miracle that she has made it twenty years. She lives on the edge of disaster and appears to have no common sense. However, she “The Necklace” is Susan Lentigo’s story from start to finish. The narrative alternates between Lentigo’s current dilemmas and the vicious events from twenty years ago. Lentigo’s daughter was brutally murdered, and that trauma continues to haunt her. She is on her way to witness the execution of the monster who murdered her child. Lentigo is a troubled character; it is a miracle that she has made it twenty years. She lives on the edge of disaster and appears to have no common sense. However, she does have friends who definitely care for her. She should elicit sympathy and compassion, but her entire existence is like a four-car wreck on the freeway with the accompanying police cars, ambulances, and firetrucks. You know what happened and how dreadful it all is; you don’t want to think about it, but you just have to look as you drive past. The plot is designed to evoke tension and emotion leading to a very melodramatic climax. There are plenty of unusual encounters and many unbelievable coincidences along the way to that extremely dramatic ending, but to me, the events were almost anticipated, and the end was actually predictable. I am sure many people will love the cinematic drama and the calamities that define Susan Lentigo, but I just could not get past her unbelievable ineptitude and incredibly coarse vocabulary. (I just feel there is more to be said than F*#*) I was given a review copy of “The Necklace” by Matt Witten and Oceanview Publishing. Read it and decide for yourself.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Davina

    What a great story about a mother’s resilience. Susan is leaving to go to North Dakota, to see the execution of the man that murdered her daughter Amy, 20 years ago. As soon as she sets off to drive from NY to North Dakota her car breaks down forcing her to find some other way to get to North Dakota. She takes the bus and manages to stop in the town her now ex husband lives in and let him know where she is going, while there she starts to have memories that she thought long ago buried and questi What a great story about a mother’s resilience. Susan is leaving to go to North Dakota, to see the execution of the man that murdered her daughter Amy, 20 years ago. As soon as she sets off to drive from NY to North Dakota her car breaks down forcing her to find some other way to get to North Dakota. She takes the bus and manages to stop in the town her now ex husband lives in and let him know where she is going, while there she starts to have memories that she thought long ago buried and questions what’s real and what isn’t. With alternating time lines and a full cast of memorable characters and an ending that breaks your heart you will not want this one to end. Can’t wait to see what Matt writes next! Thank you net galley for access to the fantastic read.

  28. 5 out of 5

    eda

    I am BLOWN AWAY!! This book MUST be on your tbr for 2021. It was so so so good. The Necklace is gripping, emotional, action packed, and full of complex characters. Susan is such a cool tough mom. It's a page turner, at one point I tried to read less of The Necklace so I could spend more time with the book but I couldn't put it down. Bravo to Matt Witten for such a great novel! Thank you to Netgalley for an eARC copy of The Necklace! I am BLOWN AWAY!! This book MUST be on your tbr for 2021. It was so so so good. The Necklace is gripping, emotional, action packed, and full of complex characters. Susan is such a cool tough mom. It's a page turner, at one point I tried to read less of The Necklace so I could spend more time with the book but I couldn't put it down. Bravo to Matt Witten for such a great novel! Thank you to Netgalley for an eARC copy of The Necklace!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

    Good read. Susan Lentingo is out for justice for her raped and murdered daughter. A slow burn thriller, mystery told in then and now format. On her way to the execution of her daughters murderer, she starts to have doubts if the right man is being executed. With help from Kyra, she’ll begin to unravel the real killer. Thank you @netgalley Matt Witten Good read. Susan Lentingo is out for justice for her raped and murdered daughter. A slow burn thriller, mystery told in then and now format. On her way to the execution of her daughters murderer, she starts to have doubts if the right man is being executed. With help from Kyra, she’ll begin to unravel the real killer. Thank you @netgalley Matt Witten

  30. 4 out of 5

    Monnie

    Despite the plot being a little bit predictable and characters who tend to err on the side of overwrought, I really enjoyed this book. Had the Tokyo Olympic games on TV not interfered, in fact (I'm a die-hard fan), there's no doubt I'd have polished the whole thing off in two sittings or less. In part, I suppose, that's because it taps into the nightmares of any mother. It was that kind of heartbreak that happened to Susan Lentigo and her husband Danny 20 years ago, when their young daughter Amy Despite the plot being a little bit predictable and characters who tend to err on the side of overwrought, I really enjoyed this book. Had the Tokyo Olympic games on TV not interfered, in fact (I'm a die-hard fan), there's no doubt I'd have polished the whole thing off in two sittings or less. In part, I suppose, that's because it taps into the nightmares of any mother. It was that kind of heartbreak that happened to Susan Lentigo and her husband Danny 20 years ago, when their young daughter Amy went missing one day in Glens Falls, New York. Soon thereafter, their worst fears were confirmed: Amy's body turns up. The killer is nowhere to be found, nor is the beaded necklace Susan and Amy made that Amy wore around her neck every single day. Later, though, a suspect is identified; he confesses, and despite a subsequent recant, he's convicted and sentenced to death by lethal injection. Fast-forward to the present as Susan - who's long been divorced from Danny - makes her way to North Dakota to witness the murderer's execution. Most of the story focuses on the tribulations of her journey (which, trust me, are plentiful) with chapters flipping back to the time of the murder to add background and insert Susan's recollections of what was going on at that time. During her in-the-here-and-now trek to the prison, though, she unearths evidence that rouses her suspicion that the wrong person may have been found guilty. Now, instead of deriving satisfaction at watching the life of a man she's hated all these years come to a welcome end, she's intent on finding out who really killed Amy and, ultimately, preventing a wrongful death. Needless to say, there are some twists and turns along the way, and the whole thing comes down to a nail-biting end as I expected. It was a thoroughly engaging adventure, but I'd be remiss if I didn't note one potentially serious glitch: at one point, a person in law enforcement hands a half-empty bottle of liquor to a character who is about to get into a car and drive. I know the laws in my home state, but just in case I checked New York's as well. And yes, there, too, drivers and passengers in cars are prohibited from possessing a container of alcohol that's been opened. So readers, please do not try this at home (and on the off-chance that you run into a clueless officer like the one in this story who tries to give you one, Just Say No). All in all, well done - and many thanks to the publisher, via NetGalley, for the opportunity to read and review a pre-release copy. If you read it, see if you agree with me that this one has the makings for a terrific motion picture (or perhaps a TV series).

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