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A woman awakes from an extended coma to find her world utterly changed.

Coming home from the hospital, LA producer Michelle gradually learns some awful truths about the car accident which impaired her memory and crippled her right arm. Most alarmingly, 19-year-old Noah (her son Tyler's pitching coach) died in the crash after Michelle’s SUV slid off the road into Topanga Canyon—and Michelle has no idea what he was doing in her car. Her husband, sound engineer Drew, has relocated to New York, where he’s enrolled Tyler in prep school. And daughter Nikki is missing. Michelle is being sued by Noah’s parents for wrongful death, and her own lawsuit against the SUV manufacturer is undermined by the fact she may have ignored a seat belt recall notice. Her family has been virtually bankrupted by her medical expenses and cannot afford to pay her attorney. Since she has zero recollection of either the accident or the events surrounding it, Michelle launches her own investigation, which she hopes will also lead her to Nikki’s whereabouts. She pieces together a progressively more complex scenario: Noah was well on the way to rock stardom when he died; Michelle herself had, pro bono, produced a video for his band, Roadhouse. In fact, her former Hollywood colleagues have seemingly turned on her and are making a biopic about Noah that may prejudice the outcome of the lawsuits. A Roadhouse groupie produces a photo card containing shots showing Nikki and Noah kissing. This takes some of the onus off Michelle (whose cougardom some gossips were blaming for Noah’s presence in her car). Now that Nikki could be a material witness, it is even more imperative that Michelle track her down. A postcard sent to Noah’s mother from Hawaii provides the first tangible clue, which lures Michelle to Maui. Despite the intriguing premise, the disjointed and meandering narrative and phoned-in prose tamp down both suspense and forward momentum.

A would-be thriller in dire need of a script doctor.

Pub Date: May 1st, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-4022-7956-0
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 2013


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