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Psychiatrist Nadine Lavoie (a supporting character in Still Missing and Never Knowing) takes center stage as a new patient revives painful memories. Her client, who attempted suicide, tells Nadine about the commune where she lived with her husband, and it brings to life Nadine's teenage years living in a commune under the same charismatic leader. As she works with the young woman, Nadine begins to remember sexual abuse and a possible murder. She starts to seek the truth, and the answers she discovers are not pretty. VERDICT Stevens writes amazing psychological suspense, and fans of Lisa Gardner will enjoy this enticing and simmering page-turner. The author displays a talent for immersing the reader in the mind of her protagonist, forcing deep emotional and some taboo topics to be confronted. Stevens also knows how to shock without being graphic. Another winner from a thriller author whose reputation will only continue to grow. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, 12/14/12; 100,000-copy first printing.]-Jeff Ayers, Seattle P.L. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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Psychiatrist Nadine Lavoie learns she can outrun her past for only so long in this powerful novel of psychological suspense from Thriller Award-winner Stevens (Still Missing), her third stand-alone. For decades, the stoic Dr. Lavoie has largely managed to repress traumatic memories of the time she spent as a teen in a commune near Victoria, B.C., led by charismatic self-styled guru Aaron Quinn. Then she hears his name for the first time in years-from new patient Heather Simeon, a suicidal, terrified young woman who has just left Quinn's River of Life Spiritual Center. No sooner does Lavoie start delving into Quinn's current activities in hopes of helping Heather than unsettling things start to happen to her-and she also has increasingly distressing flashbacks of her commune days. Although Stevens relies too heavily on conveniently timed recovered memories to propel her twisty plot, readers will likely become as hooked as Quinn's followers. Announced first printing of 150,000. Agent: Mel Berger, William Morris Agency. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
Stevens hit it big, both critically and commercially, with Still Missing (2010); Never Knowing (2011) sold well, too, but failed to live up to the promise of its predecessor. Her latest is also disappointing, lacking both the emotional punch and gripping action of Still Missing. Following a couple of traumatic experiences, widowed Canadian psychiatrist Nadine Lavoie relocates to Victoria, B.C., hoping not only for a fresh start but also for an opportunity to reconnect with her estranged twentysomething daughter, Lisa, rumored to be living on the streets somewhere in the city. Just about the time she's beginning to feel comfortable in her new job, Nadine is called in to treat clinically depressed, suicidal Heather Simeon. As Nadine tries to help the suffering woman, she learns that Heather and her husband recently left their home in the River of Spiritual Light Center, a commune run by the notorious Aaron Quinn. Nadine has her own connection to Quinn, having lived on the commune with her mother and older brother when she was a teenager. Deciding her personal connection to Quinn won't compromise her patient's recovery, Nadine proceeds with her treatment, but she finds confusing memories of her own year in the commune surfacing. Sounding too often like a lecture on the evils of communal living, the plot drags, and even Nadine's laudable determination to redress the evils and mistakes of the past can't push this beyond prosaic. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Following two best-sellers, Stevens has an established track record; the quality is slipping, but the 150,000-copy first printing of her latest suggests that her publisher will keep pushing.--Zvirin, Stephanie Copyright 2010 Booklist