I Know What You Did
By: Cayce Osborne
Narrator: Hillary Huber
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Publication Date: 07/18/2023
My Rating: 5 Stars (ARC)
When a bestselling novel fictionalizes the death of her childhood best friend—and accuses her of the murder—Petal Woznewski must figure out who wrote it and why. Truth and fiction collide in this captivating debut novel by Cayce Osborne.
Petal Woznewski is content with her quiet, introverted life in New York City: she has her junk food, her movies, and her on-again, off-again boyfriend, Gus. That peace is shattered when her name appears on the dedication page of an anonymously written thriller with a cryptic note: “I know what you did, Petal Woznewski. And now everyone else will, too.”
As she reads, Petal realizes the story is rooted in a secret she buried thirty years earlier when she was fourteen. A secret involving the tragic death of her friend, Megan. A secret that only one other person knows—their old friend, Jenny. Armed with a copy of the book and her own suspicions, Petal returns to her hometown of Madison, Wisconsin. There, she discovers more questions than answers. Jenny has disappeared, and Petal’s old high school crush, Ben, doesn’t know anything about the book—at least not anything he’s telling.
As sinister clues pile up and the thriller’s plot detours dangerously from the facts, Petal has no choice but to confront her past and solve the mystery of who wrote it—before her very real life ends as tragically as the novel.
Cayce Osborne's smashing debut, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID, is a smartly crafted 'book within a book' twisty psychological suspense thriller —where truth and fiction collide in this deadly game of cat-and-mouse keeping you on the edge of your seat until the satisfying conclusion.
Petal Woznewski (now called Petta), the star of this well-developed suspense, resides in New York City, where she can get lost in the crowd—the only place noisy, vibrant, and chaotic enough to quiet her demons. She is an introvert—escaping into movies, loud music, takeout, junk foods, drinking, smoking pot, and her boyfriend (friends with benefits), Gus (loved him), whom she keeps at a distance.
Petal does not want to remember her past. She had a traumatic childhood—her parents committed suicide, and she had to go live with her aunt as a teen. Then her best friend dies, or was she murdered? The case was closed as an accident, but there has always been doubt about what happened that night. She still thinks of that night.
Three friends: Megan (rich) and Jenny (poor), BFFs in high school.
Then Petal moves to town to live with her aunt, and she becomes the 3rd in this friendship circle. Megan and Petal have more in common due to their backgrounds, and Jenny is jealous. Someone is always left out in threes—when three friends are one too many.
Then a bestselling #1 New York Times bestselling novel hits the market that rocks Peta's world. She learns of the book from her sub gyno and later at home by Gus. The novel is fiction (with a lot of truth) centered around her childhood friend, Megan, and her death; however, the book accuses Petal of the murder and uses her real name, and the other two girls (Miri/Izzy)are fictionalized names.
The book is titled No One Suspected by ME Littleton. Who is this? She needs help finding something about the author but comes up empty. There is no photo, and the publisher keeps the author's identity a secret. The dedication page: "I know what you did, Petal Woznewski. And now everyone else will, too."
At first, she ignores it but then decides she will read it. So many things are true that are scary, and then much is false, putting her in a bad light. She cannot get any information, so she returns to her hometown of Minnesota, Wisconsin, where she swore she would never return.
Is the writer trying to lure her in? Petta must confront her past and solve this mystery. Will she be able to slay her demons and come out alive?
From dark secrets, lies, ongoing mysteries, and fast-paced—the author keeps you in suspense turning the pages to find out what happened that night with these three teen girls and who is the book's author! The setting at the reservoir and forest were atmospheric and chilling.
WHAT A WILD RIDE!
CAPTIVATING! This was a hard one to put down. The author does a fantastic job with how the book is laid out, sprinkled with excerpts from the book and alternating timelines from then and now. From voices Petta/Petal and Jenny/Izzy (book). I also enjoyed the dark humor, which added to the entertainment. I enjoyed her writing style.
I loved Gus! He was my hero and a fan of Petal with her quirky personality and her Doc Martens. I also liked Gull the Detective. Hard to believe this is a debut— an author to watch. She is on my list, and I look forward to seeing what comes next.
If you enjoy CLEVER thrillers with well-developed characters and twisty plots, I KNOW WHAT YOU DID is for you! For fans of Taylor Adams' THE LAST WORD — (another fabulous book within a book and top books of the year). Check out my #AuthorElevatorSeries Q&A with Taylor.
I look forward to listening to the audiobook narrated by a favorite, Hillary Huber!
@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks
Pub Date: July 18, 2023
My Rating: 4.5 Stars rounded to 5
July 2023 Must-Read Books
“A whip-smart and thoroughly engaging psychological thriller, with a highly memorable protagonist and a brilliantly original narrative concept. I raced through I Know What You Did in a matter of days and found it a brilliantly fresh voice in the psychological thriller genre.” —Philippa East, author of I’ll Never Tell
“A psychological thriller with a beating pulse. I was pulled into Petal’s story right from the start. Gripping, atmospheric and sharp, this fresh, new voice is written with a wry humor. A must-read.”
—Christina McDonald, USA Today bestselling author
“A whip-smart and thoroughly engaging psychological thriller, with a highly memorable protagonist and a brilliantly original narrative concept. I raced through I Know What You Did in a matter of days and found it a brilliantly fresh voice in the psychological thriller genre.”
—Philippa East, author of I’ll Never Tell
“I Know What You Did is a fast-paced thriller that grips you from the opening lines and doesn't let go until the dramatic conclusion.”
—Stephanie DeCarolis, author of Deadly Little Lies
“An alluring premise of a book within a book I Know What You Did is a real page-turner, starring anti-hero Petal with a dry humour and a dark past. I was gripped all the way to the dramatic cinema-esque finale.”
—Cate Ray, author of Good Husbands
“Propulsive and electric, I Know What You Did will have you by the throat from the very first chapter.”
—Mindy Carlson, author of Her Dying Day
About the Author
I've been a writing tutor, a news monitor, a graphic designer, a feature writer, and an associate editor for a literary magazine. I currently work in science communication and public engagement at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In early 2015, I began consistently writing fiction for the first time.
When not writing, I spend my time being a mom, cooking, traveling, stalking the shelves at my local library, and subscribing to way too many streaming services. I live in Madison, Wisconsin, with my husband Mike, two crazy boys, and one goofy Australian Shepherd named Confetti.
Visit my Writing page to find my latest short story publications—several are available to read online for free. My first novel, I Know What You Did, publishes July 18, 2023, and is now available for preorder. WEBSITE