Digital Reads Reviews

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Down on her luck and afraid for her life from her ex, when Mel got the opportunity to leave it all due to an anonymous inheritence of a hotel, she decided to make a new start with her daughter Kate. But as in any thriller, things started happening at the inn.. then bones were found in the garden… And the daughter went missing…

Having read the other books by author Sam Hayes, I was quite ready to allow the book to mess up with my mind. But it wasn’t that kind of a thriller. It had more of a gothic feel where the inn and its occupants were neglected and were waiting for the rightful owner. Tarot cards too added to the vibe.

I liked the main character’s guts to try something new and make a safe life for her daughter. She was strong in many ways, but in relationships, she had no spine. Everyone around her took her for a ride, and she happily allowed it.

I thought children in foster homes would be street smart as they learned to sleep with one eye open at an early age. Alas, our Mel was utterly-butterly naive. She even believed when a stranger called himself her brother without proof, just because they were both orphans. Sighhh… Some of the subplots were a little out there, could have been better connected. But I had a good time screaming at my kindle.

Only in the last one third, I realized the value and significance of the title. The Single Mother, for me, was not Mel, but another character who had sheer steel in her spine. Her silence spoke volumes, and her words had depth. Death and abuse took its toll, but that one was a grand-Damme who blew me away. I keenly felt her presence in the book. The last few pages had quite a bit of twists.

Giving her child the space to be might have made Mel a good mother, but having to stand strong, bide her time silently, plan everything for her daughter made the woman a stronger Single Mother. She did what she had to. All alone. A true mother.


Rating: 3.5 out of 5.





I will do anything to protect my daughter. She’s all I’ve ever wanted and all I really have, but the moment I opened that letter and accepted the inheritance, I walked us right into a dangerous trap.

I know I should have got her to tell me who she’s been talking to on the phone late at night, and where she was the day I went to pick her up from school and couldn’t find her, but she’s not spoken a word since she found that little pile of bones buried in the garden.

And now she’s missing…


Publication Date: January 2021

I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher, and this is my journey down its pages, straight from the heart. STRICTLY HONEST and UNBIASED.

All my reviews can be found here.

11 Responses

  1. Gothic thrillers can be a good change of pace. I haven’t read anything by this author but I think I will keep a lookout. Great review!

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