After escaping abuse at the hands of her parents, one girl must fight to save herself and those closest to her from a new threat.
Piper, 17, has fled the horrors of her parents’ attic to make a new life in Philadelphia. A year after she left, the voice of her late little brother, Sam, echoes in her head, and the memory of the bloodshed she left in her wake haunts her. Trusting people is out of the question. Piper enlists the help of Cam, a tech wizard, to give her a new identity, and soon she’s taken on the alias of Charlotte Thompson. But when she sees a little girl covered in bruises being dragged by a suspicious man, she’s stung with flashes of her own violent past. Ensuring the girl’s safety becomes her new focus. Soon ominous messages begin appearing at Piper’s door and then inside her apartment. Someone’s found Piper, and they want to play. Johansson creates a painfully real protagonist in Piper. When moments of light shine through the near-constant darkness, readers will feel the surge of hope too. But the relationship between Piper and Cam reads less as passionate and more as situational; their constant clashes grow tiresome in an already bleak book.
A thriller tracing the evolution of a strong-willed protagonist as she rallies against the demons of her past, dampened by forced romance. (Thriller. 12-18)