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And She Was (Brenna Spector Series #1) [NOOK Book]

Overview

On a summer afternoon in 1998, six-year-old Iris Neff walked away from a barbecue in her small suburban town . . . and vanished.

Missing persons investigator Brenna Spector has a rare neurological disorder that enables her to recall every detail of every day of her life. A blessing and a curse, it began in childhood, when her older sister stepped into a strange car never to be seen again, and it’s proven invaluable in her work. But it hasn’t helped her solve the mystery that ...

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And She Was (Brenna Spector Series #1)

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Overview

On a summer afternoon in 1998, six-year-old Iris Neff walked away from a barbecue in her small suburban town . . . and vanished.

Missing persons investigator Brenna Spector has a rare neurological disorder that enables her to recall every detail of every day of her life. A blessing and a curse, it began in childhood, when her older sister stepped into a strange car never to be seen again, and it’s proven invaluable in her work. But it hasn’t helped her solve the mystery that haunts her above all others—and it didn’t lead her to little Iris. When a local woman, Carol Wentz, disappears eleven years later, Brenna uncovers bizarre connections between the missing woman, the long-gone little girl . . . and herself.

Winner of the 2013 Shamus Award for Best Original Paperback P.I. Novel

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Editorial Reviews

Harlan Coben
“Label me a big fan.”
Lee Child
“The perfect storm; a serious talent hits on a great idea and sparks a wonderful new character we’ll follow anywhere. One of my favorite writers raises the bar—again.”
Lisa Gardner
“[Gaylin’s books] will blow your mind.”
Laura Lippman
“Deftly plotted...with one of the most memorable protagonists to come along in years.”
Perri O'Shaughnessy
"A fresh new talent."
Perri O’Shaughnessy
“A fresh new talent.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062096296
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/21/2012
  • Series: Brenna Spector Series , #1
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 17,275
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Alison Gaylin is the author of Into the Dark, the Shamus Award-winning And She Was, the Edgar®-nominated thriller Hide Your Eyes, as well as its sequel, You Kill Me, and two stand-alone novels, Trashed and Heartless. A graduate of Northwestern University and Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism, Alison lives with her husband and daughter in upstate New York.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 90 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(30)

4 Star

(36)

3 Star

(15)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(3)

Your Rating:

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 90 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 1, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    The book blurb reminded me of the TV show Unforgettable, where D

    The book blurb reminded me of the TV show Unforgettable, where Detective Carrie Wells remembers everything she sees. In fact, that's one of the reasons I wanted to read this one! Brenna Spector is a little like Carrie, only her memories don't seem to be as controlled and she can sometimes drift away into the past. While fascinating, this ability also sounds like an incredible burden. Some things are better left to hazy recollections, softened by time.

    Brenna is an investigator who specializes in missing persons. While I kept comparing her to Carrie Wells at first, she soon became her own person. She seemed more vulnerable than Carrie, maybe because she had less control over her memory? While reading, I wasn't sure if I liked Brenna or not, but wound up liking her by the end and wanting to learn more about her and her life!

    The mystery itself is rather strange. Carol Wentz blames herself for the disappearance of a little girl eleven years ago and has been obsessing about it ever since. That didn't ring true for me, as it wasn't really Carol's fault and I didn't believe that she would do some of the things she did. Then Carol disappears, and her wallet is found in the missing girl's old house. Curiouser and curiouser....

    Found myself more interested in Brenna, her struggles with living with her Super Memory, and how it affected both her personal and professional life than in Carol's disappearance. I didn't really like Carol, Carol's husband, or any of the other characters involved in the disappearance and just wanted to get back to Brenna. Because of that, I gave this one a 3/5 as while I liked it, the main plot kept getting in the way! Really liked the main character, but didn't care about the mystery. Does that make sense?

    6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 29, 2012

    Great story line - kept me guessing.

    Alison Gaylin is an exceptionally good mystery writer. Characters are interesting and believable. I really liked the twists and turns of the plot. Looking forward to her next release.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 22, 2012

    highly recommended

    I'd never heard of this author, but read a brief review in Woman's World Magazine. I was captivated by the story from almost page one. It was a true page turner and one of the best books I have read in a long time. The lead character was intriguing with her "total recall" memory and I like the way the story ended knowing that there will be a sequel and that maybe we will get more of an insight into her sister's disappearance -- it will be a long wait until 2013 when that book is released.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2012

    The summary on the back grabbed my attention, but I was hesitant

    The summary on the back grabbed my attention, but I was hesitant to read it. I like fluffy mysteries with a female heroine -- Kate Collins, Julie Hyzy, Ellen Byerrum... I like a mystery but I scare so easily!! I like the stories without the blood and gore. :) This was a different kind of book than I am used to, but it was a great story -- interesting, well written and an intriguing plot. I will be excited for her next book!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 18, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    “And She Was” by Alison Gaylin is billed as a novel

    “And She Was” by Alison Gaylin is billed as a novel of suspense (on its cover, anyway), but it doesn’t quite fit that billing. Nevertheless, it’s a satisfactory enough read. Gaylin can write. That’s never in doubt. She turns many phrases beautifully but sometimes to the point where the language detracts from the story.

    A little background: the story is basically about PI Brenna Spector investigating a years-old disappearance of a child named Iris and a modern-day disappearance that may be connected. Add to that the fact Brenna’s sister disappeared when they were kids, Brenna was a witness and the trauma caused Brenna to have a condition in which she remembers everything perfectly. So, a lot of the book is filled with flashbacks triggered by a certain sight, smell or taste. Yeah, it’s annoying. It disrupts the flow. But that’s kinda the point, isn’t it? This is what Brenna has to live with, and it’s disruptive as all heck for her.

    So, anyway, a bit more on the bad: I didn’t particularly care about many, if not most, of Brenna’s flashbacks. Skim land there. This also happened for other swaths of the book (especially where there was some fancy language, the only point of which was to show Gaylin can write). The mysteries also get too convoluted about 3/4 through.

    The good stuff: Brenna has an awesome assistant named Trent. He’s like a kinda intellectual “Jersey Shore” person. He shines. He leaps off the page, more than anyone else. I wanted more Trent! The resolution of the Iris mystery (the whodunit) was also satisfactory. I was glad to see none of the convolutions came into play there.

    There’s a sequel planned in winter 2013. I’m not sure if I’ll read it. Maybe I will if I come across it, but it’ll be nothing I put on my advance reading lists. It promises to follow up on the disappearance of Brenna’s sister, but quite frankly, I never much cared about it in “And She Was.” I wanted more on the cases Brenna was investigating, and her sister’s disappearance, in my opinion, felt like filler.

    Three stars: decent mystery, decent protagonist with an unusual memory twist.

    3 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 29, 2012

    really good mystery. a page turner

    really good mystery. a page turner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 7, 2012

    Recommend

    This is the first book I have read by Alison Gaylin. I will definately read more of her works. There are two main story lines. One was completed in this novel and the second she has just hinted at, so of course I will be impatiently waiting for the sequel which is planned for release in Winter of 2013. However, Ms. Gaylin has also written 4 other novels which I have put on my reading list.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2012

    That a sequel is coming out to this remarkable book is extremely good news for the literary world.

    Reviewed by Alice D. for Readers Favorite Brenna Spector is a missing persons investigator gifted with the ability to recall every detail of her own past. She has a "tape recorder mind" and has been written about in a book by her psychiatrist. Brenna uses this ability to psyche out clients and the people around her. Brenna and her "colorful" assistant Trent are drawn into a case by Tarry Ridge, New York Police Detective Nick Morasco. A missing woman's wallet has been found in the long-empty house of the Neff family whose young daughter Iris disappeared on Labor Day of 1998. What is disturbing is that Brenna's name and telephone number are found on a slip of paper inside that wallet. Brenna, Nick and Trent are drawn into this old cold case, chasing down a deadly killer who drives a blue Subaru Vivio and has ties to wealth and power. Was this the same person who kidnapped Brenna's sister Clea years ago? Will Nick Morasco be able to save Brenna as she finds about Iris' death and confronts who caused a series of needless deaths? "And She Was" is a well-written, well-edited thriller that will keep the reader glued to each page as main character Brenna seeks the truth about a little girl's disappearance. The plot flows smoothly to the story's conclusion with the twists and turns expected in a thriller. All characters, both major and minor, are believable and complex making "And She Was" a first rate read. A strong point is that Brenna still has ties to her former husband who left the marriage as he did not like Brenna's risk-taking career. I would like to point out one thing, the author has stereotyped the librarian. Having been a librarian for many years I would like to to assure the author that we no longer seen as grouchy women that spend their time telling people to be quiet. That a sequel is coming out to this remarkable book is extremely good news for the literary world.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2014

    Average Read.  The writer had the perfect opportunity to use Bre

    Average Read.  The writer had the perfect opportunity to use Brenna's memory to create interesting flashback scenes, 
    but they were just weird random mind wanderers: what she was wearing, where she was sitting, etc.  Poor use 
    of an amazing memory disorder.  Also felt that certain characters were underplayed; nothing was brought to 
    life for me in this novel.  Other than about 2 characters, the rest were just blah, in fact, i had to re-read many pages because
    I was so bored and would forget what I read.  Maybe it's me with the memory disorder?  lol

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 1, 2013

    Good

    Enjoyed story but flashbacks were a little too detailed to move the story along. Characters were interesting but I was a little disappointed in unanswered main question at ending. Read second book to follow through unanswered question but was still unresolved. Probably won't read third.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2013

    Good read

    Lots of good twists and turns

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2014

    Attention Grabbing

    I found the plot of "and she was", to have a unique twist on a common storyline. The main character,Brenna, has a background that helps her stand out as a female PI, which has become a well used theme for today's thrillers.

    The book is well written and the characters well developed. I am looking forward to seeing where the next books in the series takes Brenna.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2014

    New author

    My first time reading anthing from this author what caught my eye was brennas condition it reminded me of a tv show anyway i'm glad I read this book and now I have a new author to read

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2014

    EppingaGa

    Great book! Will keep you guessing up to the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 27, 2014

    Good read

    See full review on my blog

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2014

    Pl.

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    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2014

    Poor story line

    The mere fact that she has a photographic memory in the story should have told me it was a very unrealistic plot. It took me a while to get into it and nothing surprised me because if her photo memory. Poor read.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2014

    Good Read.

    Exciting book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2014

    Couldn't put it down

    Keep me wanting more at the end of the book. Good story, full of suspense and surprises.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2014

    And she was.....

    A FART!!!!!!!!!!!!

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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