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Safe Keeping

By Barbara Taylor Sissel
ISBN-13: 9780778316169
Publisher: Harlequin
Publication date: 3/25/2014
Format: Paperback
My Rating:  4 Stars  
 
At the heart of every crime, there's a family…
 
My son is a murderer…. So begins this chilling and emotionally charged mystery from highly acclaimed author Barbara Taylor Sissel.
 
Emily Lebay had always thought of her family as ordinary. Sure, they've endured their share of problems, even a time of great trouble—what family hasn't? But when a woman's body turns up in the dense woods near their home, and Emily's grown son, Tucker, is accused of murder, Emily is forced to confront the unfathomable, and everything she believed about her life is called into question.
 
This isn't the first time Tucker has been targeted by the police; a year ago he was a person of interest when another woman was found dead in the same stretch of woods. Still, neither Emily nor her daughter, Lissa, can reconcile their Tucker with these brutal crimes. Terrified, convinced there's been a tragic mistake, Emily and Lissa set out to learn the truth about Tucker, once and for all. And while his life hangs in the balance, what they discover proves far more shocking than their darkest fears….
 
 
 

My Review 

 

SAFE KEEPING BY Barbara Taylor Sissel is a gripping suspense novel, a captivating saga of one family’s emotional journey, when forced to confront the real possibility that one of their own may have committed a horrible crime. 
 
Set in Texas, two murders hang over this family’s 34-year old son, Tucker. They must all sort through their mistakes and misunderstandings to uncover the truth.  Tucker’s girlfriend Miranda was discovered dead, now another woman, Jessica, a friend Miranda’s has been found in the same stretch of woods, and the suspicion has fallen on Tucker once more.
 
Tucker’s family—father, Roy; mother, Emily; sister, Lissa; and brother-in-law, Evan—are deeply involved in the emotional chaos of the investigation, as well as questioning his innocence--could he capable of such inconceivable acts.
 
As these relationships are tested, will be bonds be strong enough to survive--a family under pressure, as they learn the truth, while considering the worst? Is forgiveness possible? 
 
Lissa and Emily are uncertain where to lay the blame for Tucker’s issues and everyone has their own issues. Are they the result of the tremendous fear he experienced as a child when in the throes of an episode of post-traumatic stress? Or is Tucker’s troubled nature the result of faulty genes?
 
Emily and Roy make tremendous sacrifices in order to keep Tucker safe. How far would you go to protect your child?  The family slowly begins to crumble under the stress of the ongoing police investigation. Roy retreats from everyone, Emily tries to pretend everything is normal, and Lissa begins her own inquiries into the murders with sacrifices. Revelations about long held secrets expose the family’s dysfunction—a riveting and haunting read.
 
Enjoyed the conversation with the author at the end, and the inspiration for this novel ---fascination with the I-45 serial killings that plagued Texas for a number of years. Look forward to reading more from this talented author!
 
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