Bad Memory

Bad Memory

by Lisa Gray


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Quiet towns keep big secrets.

Private investigator Jessica Shaw is leading a quiet life in a Californian desert community, where she spends her days working low-level cases. But when a former resident asks Jessica to help her sister, Rue Hunter—a convicted murderer whose execution is days away—Jessica can’t resist the offer.

Rue doesn't remember what happened the night two high school students were killed thirty years ago, but everybody in town is certain she’s guilty. As Jessica looks for answers, she finds that local rumors point one way and evidence points another. And nobody wants to face the truth. Meanwhile, Jessica can’t shake the feeling that someone is stalking her—now more than ever, she knows she can’t trust anyone.

As Jessica digs deeper, she encounters local secrets in unlikely places—including the police department itself. But the clock is ticking, and Jessica must find the truth fast—or Rue’s bad memory may be the death of them both.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781542092326
Publisher: Amazon Publishing
Publication date: 10/24/2019
Series: Jessica Shaw Series , #2
Pages: 316
Sales rank: 333,206
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Lisa Gray has been writing professionally for years, serving as the chief Scottish soccer writer at the Press Association and the books editor at the Daily Record Saturday Magazine. Lisa currently works as a journalist for the Daily Record and Sunday Mail. She is also the author of Thin Air. Learn more at

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Bad Memory 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Horsebranchjess 3 days ago
Bad Memory is the second book in the Jessica Shaw series. I have not read the first one yet but did not have any trouble keeping up with this story line. P.I. Jessica Shaw is hired by Rue Hunter's sister to find out if Rue really did commit murder. The clock is ticking because Rue's execution is drawing close and the case does not seem to be a simple open and close case Jessica thought it was. Digging into small town secrets lands Jessica in some real danger. Action packed, the story took some unexpected turns before a somewhat expected ending. The mystery was interesting and the pages turned easy for a satisfying thriller that had me looking up the first book to download. My voluntary, unbiased review is based upon a review copy from Netgalley.
RICHandNANCY 8 days ago
Bad Memory by Linda Gray -- 5 Stars Publisher: Amazon Publishing UK ISBN: 9781542092326 Bad Memory is as enjoyable as Lisa Gray’s first book, Thin Air. It definitely deserves a five star review. Recently novels about the guilt or innocence of a convicted prisoner, especially ones on Death Row, have been popular. Frequently they are filled with lengthy legal explanations and put forth the author’s political views about capital punishment. Unlike these, without unnecessary filler, Bad Memory used the events behind two cold cases and the complexities of life in a small town to tell the story of a woman awaiting execution. The plot never slowed and was entertaining throughout. The story was told from the viewpoint of several characters and occurrences in different locations during several periods in time. The transition flowed well. The conclusion was exciting. The characters were believable and interesting. The settings were perfectly described. I look forward to future books in the Jessica Shaw series. Reviewer: Nancy
Mimiphilly 12 days ago
I voluntarily read this ARC for an honest review - All thoughts and opinions are mine This is a first time author for me and this is part of a series. However, I don't feel I've missed out on anything Really really enjoyed this - would love to read the others in the series I found this well written, great characters and plot - lots of unpredictable twists - kept me on the edge of my seat - couldn't put this down - had to know what happened next A great read - highly recommend
livlife 14 days ago
Jessica Shaw is back! I was very excited to see a sequel because I absolutely loved the first book in this series.. Jessica is on the hunt again but this time she has traveled to Hundred Acres a small town with many secrets. Rue Hunter is on death row for killing her best friend and boyfriend even confessing to their murders! BUT as Jessica looks into this case she quickly unravels some secrets that have been long buried.Is Rue a killer or was she an innocent teenager with a bad memory of that night? You will have to read to find out! Suspense, thrills and a great female lead character.. perfect mystery! Loved this book and hoping there is a next.
TarrahMarie 14 days ago
This is the second book in the Jessica Shaw series and can be read as a stand-alone. Lisa Gray does a great job at providing contextual information relevant to characterization as she continues to develop her main character, Jessica. While some of the narrative held familiarity and was overly foreshadowed, it did not impact the overall story line or feel of the book. A modest read. More in line with a mystery/police-procedural than a suspense/thriller. 4 stars.
VWilliams 15 days ago
My first in the series of two and I can see why Book 1 (Thin Air) has garnered over 2K reviews on Amazon. The storyline revolves around a death row inmate due for execution, the sudden questioning of her own confession, and her sister's desire to get at the truth--either way. I loved the way the author built a slow-burn, gleaning a small clue that somehow festers into an actual useable gem--something to build on. Each chapter names one of the many characters and captures their view of the circumstances, whether currently, or back the thirty years that the murders happened. The hook from the beginning doesn't let up. The reader might be guessing, jumping ahead knowing what's coming, and then thwarted again by yet another twist or red herring and the tension builds. But these are old secrets. Deadly secrets. And Jessica is racing again time to either stall an execution or supply those missing pieces of the memory that just doesn't seem to form a whole picture. It's complex. Realistic dialogue, engaging characters, and thoroughly well-plotted mystery, suspense, thriller. Jessica is vulnerable but savvy, smart, independent. The question is--can she save this woman due for execution? I received this digital download from the publisher and NetGalley and greatly appreciated the opportunity to read and review. Definitely up for Book 3! My problem was a few edit misses and a couple contradictions a beta reader should have caught. Other than that, this one is totally recommended and predicted to do very well. Get in on the ground floor, go back and start with Book 1 or grab this one. Either way, you can't miss. 4.5/5 rounded up
jjthor 18 days ago
This is the second book in this series featuring Jessica who is a investigator. She is approached by a woman called Rue Hunter who wants her help to clear her sisters name before she is put to death for a crime she did not commit. It was a good story but I couldn't get past the question of why wait for so many years before hiring someone to clear her name? Other wise it was a fairly quick read that kept you reading just to see who really did dothe crime and who was stalking Jessica while she was investigating.
ZR1000 18 days ago
An interesting murder mystery… This is the second book in the Jessica Shaw series that can be read as a stand-alone. Private Investigator Jessica Shaw is at a transitional point in her life, not wanting to return to New York State where she’s licensed she’s temporarily working for a small California detective agency in Hundred Acres while she waits to be licensed in the state. The assignments are routine but when her boss is out of the office a case comes in that intrigues her and she takes it, she needs the challenge. Returning to the town she grew up in, Rose Dalton, the sister of a convicted murderer wants Jessica to look at her sister’s case. Thirty years ago the teenage Rue Hunter confessed to killing two of her friends and is scheduled to be executed in a week. Yet Rue isn’t sure that she’s guilty having no memory of the fatal act. Memories can be tricky, the mind can hide things to protect us from what it cannot cope with. Could that be the reason why there is vagueness in recollection or were certain drugs involved that can affect memory? It won’t be the first time Jessica has investigated years-old cold cases but can she find answers in the short timeframe? The clock is ticking down and this small town has dark secrets that certain people don’t want to see the light of day, Jessica’s poking soon rattles someone’s cage. Rue might not remember the fateful events that landed her in prison but someone does and they’ll do anything to protect themselves. Having recently gone through much in her personal life Jessica was an intriguing character, events that occurred previously are alluded to here, and she’s mentally and emotionally processing a lot, this case was a needed distraction. Jessica’s a strong, intelligent, determined woman who is also very human in her flaws, she learns about herself as she continues to grow. This reader really liked where she headed at the end. The storyline was an interesting murder mystery that kept this reader engaged throughout and had more than one point of view. This was a good follow up to the first book in the series though I did like that one better and I do look forward to Jessica’s next undertaking. An advanced reading copy was obtained from the publisher via NetGalley.
DebbieLTD 18 days ago
Great mystery. Kept me guessing throughout. Was very unpredictable! Jessica moved to Hundred Acres, California a few years ago to forget her past. She is working as a PI for a local man. Jessica gets an offer from a former resident of Hundred Acres, Rose, to look into the death of two local teenagers, Lucas and Megan, whom her sister, Rue, has spent the past 30 years in jail for killing and is about to be executed. The problem is that Rue confessed to the murders, the weapon was found in her room, and she was found the night of the murder covered in Lucas and Megan's blood. So could she be innocent? Locals aren't happy that Jessica is poking around in something they all want forgotten. But, what Jessica uncovers will shock everyone, including the reader!!
JillB1 19 days ago
This is the second book in the Jessica Shaw series, following Thin Air which I enjoyed earlier in the year. It was fun to be reacquainted with Jessica, still working mundane investigations when an intriguing case pops up - a woman named Rue is due to be executed for a murder on a night where she can’t recollect a thing. Our Jessica drops everything and gets far too involved in the investigation and all hell breaks loose. As Jessica pursues justice you can’t help wondering what the next twelve books will bring as this is a really great series and could go on for ever!
Janice Lombardo 19 days ago
WOW!!! This book was great! I even liked (most of) the characters. Rue Hunter, in prison for a double murder, is to be executed in one week. Her sister, Rose, offers Jessica Shaw - a PI in California for 6 months - $25,000 to dig back into the case from 1987. Also for an acquittal Rose will pay Jessica $150,000. Of course the boss, Ed Crozier, stands to profit, too. Lots of drama and suspense! The further Jessica digs into the case the more people we meet and the more involved Jessica becomes in the small town: Dylan her kinda boyfriend, Pryce ( a friend and a cop), and Sylvia - her landlord. Jessica finds things that were never brought up by the police department of Hundred Acres when Rue was sentenced with the murders. A fast-paced superb read! Highly Recommend!!! Many Thanks to Thomas and Mercer and NetGalley for a fine read!
MoonTalk 19 days ago
Jessica Shaw Has A Week To Discover the Truth About 30 Year Old Murders The novel opens with a soon to be executed prisoner having a repeated nightmare of the murder. It was not lucid dream but distorted images, because she was very drunk and very high during the murders so her memory of it is bad. Since the last novel, Jessica Shaw decided to stay in California. Through Detective Pryce suggested working for a friend of a friend’s detective agency in a small town of Hundred Acres, a desert community sixty miles north of Los Angeles. She had been working there for six months while her California PI License was pending. One afternoon, she notices a woman in a car just waiting. When Jessica left late after 6 pm, the woman approached her wanting to hire her to determine if her younger sister did murder two friends more than 30 years before. Jessica tries to blow her off until Monday, but the woman tells her that is too late as her sister is to be executed in seven days. After some research on the Internet, Jessica’s interest was piqued. The novel takes off from here but the road is not easy. Everyone from that time believes that since she confessed, she must be guilty and getting what she deserves. Her boss, who probably has most of town’s secrets locked up in his file drawers, wasn’t a help. Even Detective Pryce has “dog in this fight” also. The investigation does seem to have some holes. With all this, Jessica must find her way through a maze to discover the truth. There is a concurrent minor storyline that Detective Pryce and his partner start investigating the murder of Pryce’s old partner. The B-storyline also is rich. The reader will learn more about Jessica through relationships with her boyfriend, her boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend, Detective Pryce, her boss, the Rue Hunter and her sister. More is revealed with the Detective Pryce character in his search for his partner’s killer. The author integrates these B-storylines into the main storylines that it enriches both. As B-storylines from previous novels do cause problems with reading a later novel in a series without reading the prior novels, reading this book first should not be a problem as adequate background is provided when needed. There is some vulgar language including some f-bombs. There is some violence described both after the fact and as it was occurring. There are not any graphic sex scenes. Therefore the content is definitely adult, but, in my opinion, should not be a problem unless the reader is very sensitive some vulgar language. There is one major issue in that California has not executed anyone since 2006, and Governor Gavin is having the death champers dismantled. Please read the Author’s note at the end of the novel, then read and enjoy the novel. The novel did capture my interest that is my major criteria high star rating. I enjoyed reading this novel and look forward to the next novel in this series. The author gave a hint at the end that it will be a missing persons case — Jessica’s specialty. I have rated this book with four stars. I have received a free e-Book version of this novel through NetGalley from Thomas & Mercer with an expectation for an honest, unbiased review. I wish to thank Thomas & Mercer for the opportunity to read this novel early.