Sarah Ellsworth, the narrator of this nail-biting psychological thriller from Reinard (Pretty Dolls and Hand Grenades), enjoys her good fortune, working with inner-city single mothers while enjoying a happy family life in a mansion with her husband, Martin, in an upscale Pittsburgh suburb. One night, Sarah and Martin find the body of Yazmin Veltri, their teenage son Finn’s girlfriend, in a park’s wooded area. Nearby, drug-addled Finn, who’s injured, can’t remember what happened. Sarah wants to call 911, but Martin overrules her and decides to do nothing, fearful that Finn will be blamed for Yazmin’s death, and they leave the scene. Sarah later tries to piece together the events leading to their grim discovery, but she makes little progress. Meanwhile, Martin’s wealthy family approves of the cover-up, and Finn isn’t straight with the police, who show up after others find Yazmin’s body. The tension builds as Sarah, a janitor’s daughter, comes to realize her idyllic life is in jeopardy. Reinard knows how to keep readers turning the pages. Agent: Ella Marie Shupe, Belcastro Agency. (Jan.)
From the Publisher
An unsparing account of ‘rich people problems’ that goes on forever, like all the best nightmares.” —Kirkus Reviews
“[A] nail-biting psychological thriller…Reinard knows how to keep readers turning the pages.” —Publishers Weekly
“Sweet Water is electrically suspenseful, impossible to put down until the last gut punch of a killer ending.” —Luanne Rice, New York Times bestselling author
“A remarkable tale of family loyalties and lies set in a fresh new world. Fans of Defending Jacob—both the book and the television show—will relish this sinister story of the lengths two parents will go to in order to protect their child.” —J.T. Ellison, New York Times bestselling author
“Reinard’s domestic thriller Sweet Water, a story about betrayal, murder, and dark family secrets, held me riveted as one woman’s search for the truth threatens everyone she loves.” —T.R. Ragan, New York Times and Amazon Charts bestselling author of the Sawyer Brooks series
“Hypnotic and absorbing, a compulsive page-turner to the very end.” —Minka Kent, Wall Street Journal bestselling author
Reinard’s novel plunges a perfect family into a horrible situation whose horrors steadily deepen.
Having attended Carnegie Mellon University on a scholarship because her father, Victor Denning, was head of campus maintenance there, Sarah Ellsworth has landed in the lap of luxury, married to the younger son of wealthy, well-connected William Ellsworth and installed in the house she’s called Stonehenge ever since she and her father used to drive past it years ago. A phone call from her teenage son, Finn, threatens to bring it all crashing down. Following Finn’s iPhone location when he’s unable to tell them where he is, Sarah and Martin Ellsworth, the whiz-kid CEO of a robotics startup, find him in the woods along with the body of Yazmin Veltri, his girlfriend from the other side of the tracks. She’s been bashed to death, and Finn is the overwhelmingly obvious suspect. The Ellsworths swiftly close ranks to contain the threat, cleaning up the evidence implicating Finn and rehearsing him in a story that contains just enough facts to be plausible. Sarah, at once desperate to protect her son and sickened that she’s falling in so easily with the coverup planned by her husband’s family, is still further distressed by a meeting with Yazmin’s mother, Alisha, who demands the return of a tell-all journal her daughter had been keeping. Martin’s cousin Alton Pembroke, the sheriff in charge of the case, says he doesn’t have it. Sarah’s search leads her to Yazmin’s music teacher, Joshua Louden, who just happens to be Sarah’s first love from the days when his own family lived in Stonehenge.
An unsparing account of “rich people problems” that goes on forever, like all the best nightmares.