Nobody has ever taken care of Mia Dennett. Her upwardly mobile parents didn’t do it. Her uptight older sister didn’t do it. So the talented inner-city art teacher has learned to take care of herself. Or so she thinks, until an impulsive one-night stand turns into a nightmare far beyond Mia’s control. But why does her abductor seem so uncertain about his plans for her? Why did he choose to hide her in a remote Minnesota cabin rather than turn her over to the man who hired him? Was it an act of mercy, or something else entirely?

Mary Kubica’s debut novel, The Good Girl, is a high-intensity thriller, a psychological puzzle that will keep readers on their toes with its unique format. Alternating chapters describe Mia’s life before and after the abduction, always circling the questions of what really happened in those snowy woods, and what Mia might do if she’s ever released. If the ever-shifting timeline weren’t enough to keep things interesting, Kubica also uses multiple points of view, telling Mia’s story as seen by her mother and her kidnapper before letting us in on Mia’s own perspective. The combination could be confusing, but Kubica moves the story forward even as she explores her characters’ very different inner lives.

Seeing Mia’s story from so many angles makes it especially satisfying when the pieces of the puzzle start to fall into place. Still, Kubica leaves one shocking surprise for the end. Readers will find themselves simultaneously saying, “I never suspected!” and “Oh, of course!” as the ultimate revenge befalls the person who deserves it most.

 

ALSO IN BOOKPAGE: Read a Q&A with Mary Kubica for The Good Girl.

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