"Sarah Pinborough is about to become your new obsession."—Harlan Coben
Lisa is living a lie and everyone is about to find out.
Lisa lives for her daughter Ava, her job and her best friend Marilyn.
But when a handsome client shows an interest in her, Lisa starts daydreaming about sharing her life with him, too. Maybe she’s ready now. Maybe she can trust again. Maybe it's time to let her terrifying secret past go.
But when her daughter rescues a boy from drowning and their pictures are all over the news for everyone to see, Lisa's world explodes.
As she finds everything she has built threatened, and not knowing who she can trust, it's up to Lisa to face her past in order to save what she holds dear.
But someone has been pulling all their strings. And that someone is determined that both Lisa and Ava must suffer.
Because long ago Lisa broke a promise. And some promises aren't meant to be broken.
Sarah Pinborough is the number one Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author of the psychological thriller Behind Her Eyes, and more than twenty other novels and novellas, including The Death House and a young adult thriller, 13 Minutes. She has also written for the BBC. She lives in England. sarahpinborough.com
Cross Her Heart 4.6 out of 5based on
More than 1 year ago
1 days ago
I said yes because I wanted to. Because I’m lonely… being near him is like peeling back layers of delicate crepe paper wrapped around a treasure you’ve packed away somewhere to keep safe and forgotten about.
His eyes are full of quiet interrogation. Marriage, divorce… other boyfriends - all the information men are interested in. Things that boil down a woman’s relevance in relation to other men, rather than anything in and of themselves. The inside information comes later. Those talks are for the middle of the night, heads on pillows, faces only outlines in the darkness. That’s when people surrender their weapons to each other and hope they don’t end up stabbed in the night by them in the future.
This is the other thing she’s learned over time. The secret is her own. It's her burden and sharing it doesn't lighten the load it simply doubles it… You can’t trust a drunk, she knows that too.
This was a darkly intriguing, tragically twisted, and disturbingly realistic tale, which was cast with a full slate of unlikable and contemptible characters. There wasn’t one admirable person in the lot while the vast majority were quite vile and committed heinous acts that had me flinching and cringing and wanting to swear the most wicked expletives I know, and maybe even create a few more for good measure.
The storylines were cunningly crafted, shrewdly paced, and deftly written from multiple POVs that kept the little pea rattling in my cranium on fire with constantly evolving theories and hypothesis, I fear the little legume will forever bear scorch marks.
Sarah Pinborough is obviously an evil genius, and someone her neighbors should seriously take heed to respectfully and quietly tip-toe around and should never even consider disturbing or knocking on her door without having armloads of tasty treats and posh bribes in hand.
I know for many, Sarah Pinborough's work is completely controversial - readers seem to either love the stories or hate them. I am FIRMLY in the LOVE THEM category - I am completely enamoured with how Sarah spins a story, and reveals crazy twist after crazy twist while keeping the story on track.
Cross Her Heart was a book that I devoured. I loved that it moved back and forth both between different character perspectives, and between the past and present. The way that the little pieces of the plot were slowly revealed was absolute perfection for me - it kept building a sense of tension of something truly bad coming. And of course, Sarah did not disappoint.
I will also say that I adore the complexity of the characters that Sarah brings to life. There is something wonderfully satisfying to me when it takes time to really get a sense for who a character is. Lisa is a perfect example of this - I could not help but feel more and more empathy for her as her story was revealed.
Like any good suspense, I don't believe in offering spoilers to the storyline, so I will stop here. But I would absolutely recommend this book for lovers of a good psychological thriller and character drama. This one is going to stay with you awhile.
More than 1 year ago
More than 1 year ago
I found this book very predictable. Loved her first book though.
More than 1 year ago
Holy Moly was this a book that made me glued to it until that very shocking but bittersweet ending! As you start reading this book, you are instantly drawn to Lisa and her daughter, Ava because you know right off the bat that Lisa is hiding something from everyone. Then you add in Lisa's best friend Marilyn and the secrets that she might be holding on to. It seems a simple rescue turns into secrets been revealed on Lisa's past that makes you wonder who is this person and what is the truth.
Everything in this book will lead up to those last 20 or so pages when everything just explodes on the real truth. When I got to that point, I don't think I could read faster and I think my heart was keeping the same beat for what happened!! Then you get this very bittersweet ending that will leave a tear in your eye for the past will come full circle in the end. This has to be one of the better thrillers that I read in a while that will truly leave you speechless but at the same time, happy knowing that everything will be alright in the end.
After reading this book, I'm going to have to go back and read more of Sarah Pinborough's books and wonder what is coming next from my new favorite thriller Author!!
Thank You to Sarah Pinborough for that ending that left me a fan of yours for life!!
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book from the Publisher!
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book from Edelweiss!
More than 1 year ago
If author Sarah Pinborough’s previous best-selling psychological thriller Behind Her Eyes was the inspiration for the #WTFThatEnding campaign, then her new novel, Cross Her Heart, should be the inspiration for the #WTFThatWholeBook campaign.
Can the past ever stay in the past? No, and when it comes back, it comes back with a fury. Cross Her Heart is the story of three women: a single mom, her daughter, and her best friend. Lisa is a good person with a bad past. Ava is a rebellious teen, in a little over her head. Marilyn is a strong woman who seems to have it all together. They all have secrets. And faster than you can snap your fingers one of the secrets is out and their lives change – forever. Lisa’s past collides with Marilyn’s present, and everyone, including Ava, is put in a life-threatening situation. The illusion of control each of them had is broken.
I felt like a pinball in a pinball machine while reading Cross Her Heart – bouncing all over the place, thinking I had figured something out, and then wham! Nope, wrong. Sarah Pinborough is one of the few authors where I am constantly talking to the book: OMG! Oh No! What??? And this rapid-fire, totally confusing, totally satisfying pace keeps up right until the very last page.
Lisa is just a quiet, shy mom, Marilyn is her best friend who is always there for her, and Ava is just trying to grow up. You will love them and feel sorry for them, but there will also be times when you don’t like them. Lisa has been uneasy, thinking she is seeing things, that someone is watching. Something’s up with Marilyn but no clue what. Ava has a secret life going on, many layers of a secret life in fact. What is the significance of “Cross Your Heart and Hope to Die” and what’s this about a broken promise? Many things to keep you guessing – and guessing wrong.
Sara Pinborough’s characters are well-developed and complex, and her phrasing is exquisite. Some samples from the ARC I read: “The dark soil of his mind.” “. . . hot tar glued to the lining of my stomach,” the words gave me chills. And who hasn’t felt like this: “The inside information comes later. Those talks are for the middle of the night, heads on pillows, faces only outlines in the darkness. That’s when people surrender their weapons to each other and hope they don’t end up stabbed in the night by them in the future.”
Cross Her Heart is fast-paced and flows smoothly. So smoothly that when there was a big – no, giant - surprise I took a breath and relaxed, thought wow, what a story. And then I looked at my place in the book . . . half way through. What more could possibly happen? Trust me, lots more. Cross Her Heart will make you sad and angry and cringe and cry and want to turn away, but you won’t be able to put the book down. It’s amazing.
I received an ARC of Cross Her Heart from the publisher. I was not required to write a review and all opinions are my own. I will read anything Sarah Pinborough writes.
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