!Free Book ⚖ The Follower ♶ SHE D DO ANYTHING FOR HER HUSBANDJulie Has The Perfect LifeA Kind Boyfriend, Loving Parents And Good Grades She Has Everything Ahead Of HerCora S Life Is A NightmareA Psychopath For A Husband, A Violent Father And A Terrible Secret There S No Way OutBut One Night, Their Worlds Collide Locked In An Isolated House Together, They Must Work Out What Has Happened And Who They Can Trust To Set Them FreeFrom The Bestselling Author Of The Never List, This Is A Breath Taking New Thriller About The Wife Of A Kidnapper And Her Relationship With His Last Victim
When Julie is kidnapped and taken to somewhere remote..she meets CoraBut Cora isn t like Julie.Zan s second novel is creepy, intriguing and I really liked it The characters are well developed and there is an actual story.Unlike many books of this genre I was interested in the lives of the people and the reasons behind Julie s captivity.Although quite samey in places The Follower is gripping and rather scary, Julie s ordeal is twisted Adam was the one who interested me An ex cop, his young sister went missing and in trying to find her, he develops an obsession..a rather unhealthy one Although I did enjoy this read,I feel it could have had of a hold on me I felt that the tale was up and down, Usually with thrillers I read in a day but this one I was able to put down, do something else and then go back to it.Saying that it will appeal to thriller fans This novel is very character driven There are three characters Julie, Cora and Adam who are the main focus but there was actually one that I felt this novel was really most about and here s a surprise it wasn t the girl kept captive Don t get me wrong, I felt for Julie, the girl that got abducted and locked up in a room with boarded up windows Her ordeal was horrific and although nothing graphic is mentioned, it doesn t take much to feel the impact of her situation Fact is, she gets only a few scraps to eat from Cora turning her into a severely emaciated girl She certainly isn t the lively girl from before, her days turned monotone and all she s able to do is think about the best tactic to escape I was happy to see that even in the most dire moments she never loses the fire within completely and she s quite smart too in the way she s thinking, how she tries different tactics to please her captor I read her chapters and was very on edge every time because I knew she would only need a moment I was waiting with her for that break, that opportunity to attack and be free again after all these months Unfortunately, that moment doesn t seem to come along as all angles are covered No the one I m talking about is Cora, the woman who brings her food and who Julie tries to appeal to and engage in conversation every day When I met Cora I thought she was pure evil to let this happen When her husband James is away she could set her free if she wanted too Then it became clear that these women share a bond Even though Cora can move freely, she is just as scared for her husband and after a while it dawned on me that there was a time when she was just a normal kid The only thing that made her different from you and me was her tragic life and the fact that nobody believed in her, was her friend or lover I couldn t help but feel pity and just when that feeling of empathy overruled, I was catapulted back to the present situation I wanted her to still have some good in her, I wanted to believe in her, but all I saw was someone cold and detached, evil How did it come to this, how can she be like that All is explained in chapters in between, going back and fro present and past, working its way slowly up to her encounter with James, her husband and leader of a cult.James voice isn t very prominent but it was rather horrifying to read that she s falling for him It s clear he kind of brainwashed her, or perhaps she wanted to believe in what he was telling because she never had anyone who believed in her and just wanted to belong Again, I felt understanding and sympathy with her past self, alternating with anger for her present character She dreams of living a quiet life on the farm and having a loving family With a father who never gave her the time of day she finally sees someone who can give her the life she longs for She starts believing and becomes his follower They believe that The Revelation will come What that entails will be revealed slowly, after I already feared the worst.A final mention is for Adam, an ex cop with an unhealthy obsession for finding missing girls and this case in particular for his own personal reasons Adam is on a mission to rescue someone but who is he going to rescue exactly I was a bit confused how Adam got on Cora s trail because she wasn t missing and I thought I spotted a few plot holes there in his explanations but nothing that put a downer on my reading experience.This is Koethi Zan s second novel and although it wasn t as mind blowing as The Never List which I gave 5 stars and has a different approach, it was intriguing and played with my feelings brilliantly The characterization of Cora and Julie was very strong and on point and I could have given it 4 stars but I don t think I really want to read it again, it s not a very uplifting story after all, hence my 3.5 stars. I liked the author s previous title, The Never list, although the characters weren t perfect, it suprised me with it s unexpected twists and turns I hoped that she would have ironed out the character issues in her second book, but unfortunately this was only okay for me Although it was suspenseful at times, I never connected with the characters, especially Adam 2017 seems to be the year of thrillers, and there was nothing in this story that made it stand out I am sure there are many suspense readers who will disagree with my opinions The Story Julie Brookman has the perfect life She has many friends, a boyfriend she loves, an affluent family and promising career ahead of her, until one night all that changes Waiting alone at a deserted train station Julie is kidnapped by James a religious cult leader who believes Julie will bring him his destiny Locked away in his house Julie struggles to cope and tries her hardest to communicate with James crazy wife Cora, who could turn out to be dangerous than Julie first realised. 3.5 I loved The Never List This was a good story and I did enjoy it for the most part, though there always felt like there was something missing that I can t put my finger on The ending was way to abrupt and left too many loose ends after such a long build up, while I like this sometimes with a single thread of a story I am no so keen when they all end this way. The tricky second novelAs she is making her way back to university one evening, Julie is abducted She is kept in a locked room and gradually learns a little about her captors The man, James, is a fanatic who has created his own distorted religion and for a time had a small group of followers All have since deserted him except for his wife Cora a woman he has abused to the point where she is entirely submissive to him Julie begins to wonder if somehow she can win Cora over, so that she will help her escape.Alongside the story of Julie s plight, we gradually learn Cora s story the troubled childhood and adolescence that led to her coming under the sway of the evil James James himself is given no real backstory, so his motivation is left undeveloped he s simply a mad monster The final strand of the book belongs to Adam, an ex policeman who hunts for abducted women in his own time, as a kind of penance for the loss of his own sister to a predator before Adam was born The first third of this book is great and then I m afraid it all begins to slide downhill, eventually landing with a crash which shatters the last remaining pieces of credibility The quality of the writing is high and at first it builds a good level of tension The storyline is very dark Julie s treatment in her captivity is horrific with repeated episodes of violence and rape, although happily Zan doesn t make us watch the latter it is implied rather than described Each of the characters is deeply damaged except Julie, so it s unfortunate that she s so unlikeable Despite the traumas she undergoes, I found it hard to empathise with her or, indeed, to care much what happened to her.Cora s story is perhaps interesting and she is rather empathetic during her teen years, when she is dragged around the country by her drunken father, never staying in any place long enough to put down roots or make friends But sadly, her story gradually descends from being dark but credible, going straight past melodrama and on down to ridiculous Adam never really comes to life as a character and feels rather tacked on, as if he exists only so that he can be around for the denouement a denouement that regrettably becomes somewhat farcical.The basic idea is good and the quality of the writing makes it quite readable At first, the characterisation seems as if it s going to be good too but somehow after a bit they stop ringing true It all becomes a bit over the top too many crazy people with poorly developed motivation I think the problem is that none of it feels psychologically believable, and in the end I m afraid they all begin to feel cartoonish A pity, but now that Zan has the notoriously tricky second book out of the way, here s hoping her next one will replicate the much higher standard she reached in her excellent first one, The Never List 2 stars for me, so rounded up.www.fictionfanblog.wordpress.com Thank you to netgalley and the publishers for allowing me to read an arc of this book I loved The Never List and recommend it to everyone so when I saw this I was really excited to read it The rest of my TBR was instantly ignored Right from the start a creepy tone was set and I was swept up in the disturbing story unable to tear myself away I did not love the ending but up until then this book was brilliant and definitely another I will be recommending Kept me on the edge of my seat. I would have given stars if it wasn t for the ending I was really shocked when I turned the page and found the booked had just abrubtly ended There were too many loose ends still Apart from that it was a very good read Julie is abducted one evening late, at a train station When they get to the abductor s house, there is another woman and Julie thought she will help her But this is Cora, the wife And she will do anything for her husband Then Julie s nightmare begins, but she never gives up hope that she will escape and make her way home. Ah, the dreaded second book Half of me didn t even want to read this because I was so worried that I would compare it to The Never List which I recently put in a list of my top 20 books of the last few years But I tried to put those feelings to the side and read this on its own merits And while it didn t live up to, for me personally anyway, her hugely successful and gripping first novel, The Follower was..okay For anyone unfamiliar with The Never List then I m sure they will love this dark and disturbing thriller but fans of The Never List may find it lacking the heart racing suspense and jaw dropping twists they are probably expecting.The first few pages were actually very promising Julie is kidnapped from a deserted train station by an unknown perpetrator and taken to an isolated farmhouse When she gets there, she sees a woman and expecting some sisterhood kindness she asks to help but that woman is Cora and as we find out via flashbacks, Cora s cold and aloof behaviour has its roots in her unconventional upbringing Cora tells her present day story interspersed with Julie s account of her imprisonment as well as Cora s past We also meet Adam, an ex policeman with a heart breaking family past, who is devoting his life to tracking down missing girls.I read this over two days as I really hoped it would start to grab me like The Never List did but sadly it didn t There was absolutely nothing definitive I can put my finger on as the plot was well thought out, the characters were intriguing and multi layered but I didn t really care about them they left me cold and I never felt like I was there with them, willing them on And I really didn t enjoy The ending either In fact when I turned the last page, I was shocked that it had finished there as I had been expecting And that pretty much sums up my feelings about the whole book I think my expectations were too high Thanks to Vintage and to Netgalley for my review copy of The Follower. A fast read, based on an implausible concept of human psychology, with a frustrating end.