Monday, June 16, 2014

That Night by Chevy Stevens

As a teenager, Toni Murphy had a life full of typical adolescent
complications: a boyfriend she adored, a younger sister she couldn't relate to, a strained relationship with her parents, and classmates who seemed hell-bent on making her life miserable. Things weren't easy, but Toni could never have predicted how horrific they would become until her younger sister was brutally murdered one summer night. 

Toni and her boyfriend, Ryan, were convicted of the murder and sent to prison.

Now thirty-four, Toni is out on parole and back in her hometown, struggling to adjust to a new life on the outside. Prison changed her, hardened her, and she’s doing everything in her power to avoid violating her parole and going back. This means having absolutely no contact with Ryan, avoiding fellow parolees looking to pick fights, and steering clear of trouble in all its forms. But nothing is making that easy—not Ryan, who is convinced he can figure out the truth; not her mother, who doubts Toni's innocence; and certainly not the group of women who made Toni's life hell in high school and may have darker secrets than anyone realizes. No matter how hard she tries, ignoring her old life to start a new one is impossible. Before Toni can truly move on, she must risk everything to find out what really happened that night.

But the truth might be the most terrifying thing of all.

I've read all of Chevy's previous books and loved them all so I was really excited to read That Night.  I wasn't disappointed in the least, in fact, I practically inhaled the novel, reading it as soon as I received it!

While her previous works seemed to have a psychiatric air to them, that was not the case with That Night.  In fact, at first, I was curious how she was going to pull it off but she takes us back to when Toni and Ryan were teenagers and then flash forwards to the present when they are released from prison.  Although the character development of Ryan was weak, it was spectacular with Toni.

The way Toni slowly evolves from shock, to rage, to grief and then acceptance of her fate is an emotional rollercoaster and I really felt sorry for her.  She is a very strong character who comes into her own through the years and Stevens doesn't pull any punches.  

I was thoroughly surprised on the truth.  I didn't see it coming at all and looking back, I see the foundation was delicately laid but I never put two and two together.  Bravo to Stevens for another thrilling, gritty page-turner with memorable characters! I can't wait to read what she writes next!

Highly recommend!!

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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