The Perfect Stranger (Megan Miranda)

Leah Stevens needs to find the Exit sign immediately if not sooner. Her short career as a Boston journalist, newly crossing the threshold, is soon to hit the skids. Leah was following a story in which multiple female suicides had happened at the local university. Suspicion wafted in the air and Leah followed through with her story. Although she never fully divulged the name of the perpetrator in her article, the damage was done and the newspaper would likely face libel charges. Even her boyfriend convinced her to quit and leave town….

…But Noah was not welcoming guilt by association. So Leah hits a neighborhood bar and bumps into an old friend. Emmy goes back to Leah’s apartment and they drown their sorrow in a vodka marathon. They arrive at a plan. With Western Pennsylvania in their sites, they rent a house together in a small town. Leah uses her degree to teach at the local high school and Emmy works at odd jobs at the night shift. Ah, the idyllic life and an opportunity to start fresh. But one morning Emmy doesn’t come home after her shift. Leah leaves notes for her since Emmy doesn’t have a cell phone. Hours turn into days. No Emmy. It’s time to call the police. But here’s where it gets good. Everything has been in Leah’s name.

There are no receipts or mail or anything tangible to prove that Emmy actually exists. All attempts to blaze a trail to find Emmy end up hitting the wall. And eyes turn on Leah. Megan Miranda presents a storyline with plenty of zig and zag. Just when you think that you’ve figured it all out, she places you in another slip knot. Miranda implements the first person voice of Leah to tell the story. She has an easy flow to her writing style as the words fly across the page. You find yourself saying “just a few more pages.” Miranda’s writing is as effortless as it is cinematic – I can see her scenes played out on the big screen as if it was made for it. I believe she will be able to transfer her books seamlessly to film, and I can almost guarantee her thrillers will be picked up for the big screen as well.

However, for me, The Perfect Stranger had too many players, and the various subplots didn’t come together as neatly as I would have liked. I was captivated by the story from chapter one, but I must admit I didn’t love the main character, Leah. By the halfway point, I found her inner thoughts started to get on my nerves and became slightly annoying. I actually didn’t really ‘love’ any of the characters in the story which partly took away from my enjoyment – there were quirks about each of them that seemed to bother me.Megan Miranda’s first book received high praise. This one follows suit but in a different vein. She doesn’t serve tension by the spoonful. It’s more like the heavy mugs of the aforementioned vodka marathon. It’s one gulp after another. One heck of a meal to digest all at once. Overall, it was an enjoyable book, but I would recommend Miranda’s other novel “All The Missing Girls” over this one.

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Comments

  1. Check out my review on the same 💞📚

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I will. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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