BOOK REVIEW | LOST YOU
TITLE: Lost You
AUTHOR: Haylen Beck
PUBLISHER: Crown Publishing
RELEASE DATE: August 6, 2019
GENRE: Thriller, Fiction, Suspense
A provocative and unputdownable psychological suspense about two women locked in a desperate fight over a child each believes is rightfully hers
Libby needs a break. Three years ago her husband split, leaving her to raise their infant son Ethan alone as she struggled to launch her writing career. Now for the first time in years, things are looking up. She’s just sold her first novel, and she and Ethan are going on a much-needed vacation. Everything seems to be going their way, so why can’t she stop looking over her shoulder or panicking every time Ethan wanders out of view? Is it because of what happened when Ethan was born? Except Libby’s never told anyone the full story of what happened, and there’s no way anyone could find her and Ethan at a faraway resort . . . right?
But three days into their vacation, Libby’s fears prove justified. In a moment of inattention, Ethan wanders into an elevator before Libby can reach him. When the elevator stops and the doors open, Ethan is gone. Hotel security scours the building and finds no trace of him, but when CCTV footage is found of an adult finding the child wandering alone and leading him away by the hand, the police are called in. The search intensifies, a lost child case turning into a possible abduction. Hours later, a child is seen with a woman stepping through an emergency exit. Libby and the police track the woman down and corner her, but she refuses to release Ethan. Asked who she is, the woman replies:
“I’m his mother.”
What follows is one of the most shocking, twist-y, and provocative works of psychological suspense ever written. A story of stolen identity, of surrogacy gone horribly wrong, and of two women whose insistence that each is the “real” mother puts them at deadly cross-purposes, Lost You is sure to be one of 2019’s most buzzed-about novels. (Description from NetGalley)
(Before reading any further, please be aware that this review may contain spoilers)
I thought Lost You was a very sad story. Not emotional, but I felt very sad for the two main characters. I’m sure I couldn’t connect emotionally because I don’t have children of my own and don’t have a yearning for one at this point in my life, but I could empathize with both characters and what they were going through.
Libby wanted a child so bad and couldn’t have one of her own, so she paid thousands of dollars and destroyed her marriage to have a surrogate carry one for her….even then it wasn’t genetically hers.
Anna was a poor, recently jobless woman who needed to make some money, so accepted the role as surrogate only to find that she fell in love with her unborn child and decided not to give him up.
Both women did something terrible to each other and they end up paying the price for it. They both did it because of the love they had for the baby. They would both do anything to have him.
Overall, I enjoyed the book, but it wasn’t as suspenseful as I thought it might be. I wasn’t at the edge of my seat and I figured the character’s paths were going to end badly. I’d characterize this book more as women’s fiction than a suspense or a thriller.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
HAYLEN BECK is the pseudonym of acclaimed, Edgar Award-nominated author Stuart Neville, whose crime fiction has won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and made best-of-year lists with numerous publications, including the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Boston Globe. His first Haylen Beck novel was Here and Gone.
Thank you to Crown Publishing for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.