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All the Dangerous Things Review: Back-of-Book Description
Following up her instant New York Times bestseller, A Flicker in the Dark, Stacy Willingham delivers a totally gripping thriller about a desperate mother with a troubled past in All the Dangerous Things.
One year ago, Isabelle Drake’s life changed forever: her toddler son, Mason, was taken out of his crib in the middle of the night while she and her husband were asleep in the next room. With little evidence and few leads for the police to chase, the case quickly went cold. However, Isabelle cannot rest until Mason is returned to her―literally.
Except for the occasional catnap or small blackout where she loses track of time, she hasn’t slept in a year.
Isabelle’s entire existence now revolves around finding him, but she knows she can’t go on this way forever. In hopes of jarring loose a new witness or buried clue, she agrees to be interviewed by a true-crime podcaster―but his interest in Isabelle’s past makes her nervous. His incessant questioning paired with her severe insomnia has brought up uncomfortable memories from her own childhood, making Isabelle start to doubt her recollection of the night of Mason’s disappearance, as well as second-guess who she can trust… including herself. But she is determined to figure out the truth no matter where it leads.
All the Dangerous Things Review: My Thoughts
I read another book by this author last year – A Flicker in the Dark. I wasn’t completely sold on that book. (Click that title for my review on it) At the time it felt a little…boring. Lacking. “Already been done before”. So I have to be honest, I didn’t choose this book due to a whole lot of excitement, but rather a lack of more compelling options on Book of the Month.
Then, several months later, my friend and I wanted to read a book together, as we do sometimes. We both had this one on our shelves and the first page really caught my attention with how the main character couldn’t sleep. Unfortunately, at the time, I was also struggling with sleep, though not to her extent. Thankfully.
In any case! We decided to read this All the Dangerous Things together, and I am happy to say, I enjoyed this book much more than the other one! I found it immediately compelling and a bit anxiety inducing. We were both really pulled into the story and read it fairly quickly.
I really enjoyed the dual timelines of the present day, adult main character and the past, child version of her. It was clear that something terrible had happened back then just as something terrible had happened now. But is she really the cause of both? or either? That’s what keeps you sucked in and needing to know more.
I was pleasantly kept wondering and while I did have guesses about what really happened and who did it, I wasn’t able to really guess the whole thing too far ahead.
The characters felt well written, even some of the side ones that we don’t interact with too much. Except maybe for the parents in the past timeline. But I don’t want to give to0 much away there.
The settings felt easy to picture and really play a large part of the story.
Her writing this go around was smoother and more natural. not quite as flowery and fluffy. So that was a good improvement.
Favorite Quotes from All The Dangerous Things:
“In learning to read, I was also learning to fall in love with words; I liked how each one was different, unique, like a fingerprint….Each new word was a new experience, a new sound. A new feeling. And each combination led to a new story to read, a new world to discover.”
“We all have one, I suppose. A story. A series of events that twist our lives along some uncharted path. A sequence of births and deaths, beginnings and endings. Love and loss. Joy and pain.”
“…finding your life unraveling like that makes you feel pretty desperate to weave it into something beautiful and whole before it disappears altogether and leaves you with nothing.”
“Nothing about grief makes sense: the things it has us do, the lies it leads us to believe.”
All the Dangerous Things Review: In Conclusion
I thought this book was really good – better, in my opinion, than her first. All the Dangerous Things gets 4 stars from me! The writing was good, the story introduced something that felt new and not already done, and it kept me intrigued from start to finish.
I would recommend it to people who enjoy mystery/thrillers and the subject matter of sleep or motherhood.
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