Amnesia and fugue states have been frequent constructs in mysteries and thrillers in the last few years. Some have been very good and some have felt like bad imitations of better books.
Lisa Jewell's I Found You, however, manages to use the premise in a compelling novel with well-drawn characters.
Alice is a single mother of three, compassionate, talented, and impulsive. Her life has been a series of mistakes, but she has made the best of bad situations and has found a measure of peace and stability in a Yorkshire seaside village.
Frank finds himself on a beach in freezing rain and is unable to coordinate his thoughts. He doesn't know his name or how he got there; he is a blank slate.
Lily left her home in Russia after a whirlwind romance and marriage. She has been in London for only a couple of weeks when her prompt and devoted husband fails to return home. Initially, the police fail to take her seriously when Lily reports him missing, but when they do look into the situation, it appears that Carl Monrose doesn't exist. His passport is bespoke and expensive, but fake.
These three characters in the present have puzzles to solve--the solutions to the puzzles may not be satisfying.
Interspersed with the present day chapters are chapters about an annual family outing to Ridinghouse Bay twenty-three years earlier. A handsome young man pays attention to young Kirsty, and her brother Gray is instinctively alert and uncomfortable.
Well-written and engrossing, I Found You kept me attentive throughout.
Read in Oct.; blog review scheduled for April 9, 2017.
Mystery/Suspense. April 25, 2017. Print length: 352 pages.