Monday, July 13, 2015

Review: A Small Indiscretion

Summary: At nineteen, Annie Black abandons California for a London winter of drinking to oblivion and looking for love in the wrong places. Twenty years later, she is a happily married mother of three living in San Francisco. Then one morning, a photograph arrives in her mailbox, and an old obsession is awakened.

After a return trip to London, Annie’s marriage falters, her store floods, and her son, Robbie, takes a night-time ride that nearly costs him his life. Now Annie must fight to save her family by untangling the mysteries of that reckless winter in Europe that drew an invisible map of her future.

With the brilliant pacing and emotional precision that won Jan Ellison an O. Henry Prize for her first published story, A Small Indiscretion announces a major new voice in suspense fiction as it unfolds a story of denial, obsession, love, forgiveness—and one woman’s reckoning with her own fateful mistakes. -- Random House

I am going through my finished books and found one that I read many months ago -- A SMALL INDISCRETION by Jan Ellison. I remember that this suspense novel was a well written novel that took me on a question-filled journey through the main character's life. And I recall that the way the author eventually revealed the answers was pretty special.

A SMALL INDISCRETION tells the story of Annie Black, a mother and wife who lives in San Francisco and runs a custom lighting store. When a photograph arrives in the mail, it sets into motion a series of events that turn Annie's life upside down.

First, Annie decides to reveal to her long-time husband a very secrets about her past and her recent trip to London. Then, her store is basically ruined when an overflowing bathtub falls through the ceiling, and her son is in a serious car accident that leaves him in a coma. The other passenger, her employee Emme, mysteriously disappears. And finally, her husband, who is still reeling from Annie's revelation, decides that he wants to separate.

Annie knows that it's essential that she uncover the mysteries from her past to save her marriage and her son.

A SMALL INDISCRETION was a really good read! I remember enjoying this novel and how there were so many secrets... or little mysteries. And I liked how the questions were answered throughout the course of the novel. In addition, Ms. Ellison is just a wonderful author. Her characters were fully developed and the plot was both intriguing and suspenseful.

I especially appreciated how the author chose to tell this story -- by using flashbacks, memories from the recent past, as well as current journal-like entries from the time following her son's accident. She wove these storytelling methods effortlessly, and I thought they were extremely effective in not only building the suspense but also in revealing the mysteries.

As much as I appreciated this novel, I do remember figuring out some pretty major things on my own... and earlier than I probably would have liked. (Maybe that was the author's intent because I am the first to admit that I'm not to most insightful reader in books like that!) Having said that, I really enjoyed the pacing of this novel and how the story unfolded. It was all very well done!

I do think A SMALL INDISCRETION would make a great book club selection. The novel both suspenseful and literary, and the characters are really fascinating... especially Annie. I think most women would find much to discuss about Annie's behavior. In addition, there are enough topics like love, obsession, betrayal, forgiveness, marriage, and second chances that make it interesting to dissect.

Overall, A SMALL INDISCRETION is an excellent example of literary suspense, and I highly recommend it to fans of this genre.

Thanks to FSB Associates for providing a review copy of this novel.

Mystery Mondays is a regular feature where I review all types of mystery books -- traditional mysteries, suspense/thrillers, and even cozies! Please feel free to share your thoughts on any recent mystery books that you've read. Mystery Mondays is a regular feature where I review all types of mystery books -- traditional mysteries, suspense/thrillers, and even cozies! Please feel free to share your thoughts on any recent mystery books that you've read.

1 comment:

bermudaonion said...

Wow, it sounds like a lot happened to Annie all at once. I don't mind an early reveal in a fast paced book.