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Before We Were Strangers
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2018
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  Library Journal Review

Twenty-three years ago, Sloane McBride's mother vanished without a trace. Most people thought she'd just walked out on her difficult marriage, but five-year-old Sloane heard something that night that still makes her wonder. Now a world-famous model, Sloane is back in the small Texas town she fled at 18, determined to get some answers, even if they rip apart what's left of her family. Fearing her powerful, autocratic father is somehow responsible but hoping she's wrong, Sloane begins her search only to be challenged at every turn by those who will do anything to see that the past stays buried. But Sloane won't give up, and as the danger grows, the passion between her and police officer Micah Evans, her high school ex, flares back into life, adding romance to a tale rife with jealousy, dysfunction, and deception. VERDICT Realistic, often deeply flawed characters; well-handled multiple viewpoints; and a dark, twisty plot that will leave readers unsure until the very end keep the pages turning in this engrossing, insightful romantic thriller. Discussion questions are included. Novak (Face Off) lives in the Sacramento, CA, area. © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Summary
Something happened to her mother that night. Something no one wants to talk about. But she's determined to uncover her family's dark secrets, even if they bury her.<br> <br> Five-year-old Sloane McBride couldn't sleep that night. Her parents were arguing again, their harsh words heating the cool autumn air. And then there was that other sound--the ominous thump before all went quiet.<br> <br> In the morning, her mother was gone.<br> <br> The official story was that she left. Her loving, devoted mother! That hadn't sat any better at the time than it did when Sloane moved out at eighteen, anxious to leave her small Texas hometown in search of anywhere else. But not even a fresh start working as a model in New York could keep the nightmares at bay. Or her fears that the domineering father she grew up with wasn't just difficult--he was deadly.<br> <br> Now another traumatic loss forces Sloane to realize she owes it to her mother to find out the truth, even if it means returning to a small town full of secrets and lies, a jilted ex-boyfriend, and a father and brother who'd rather see her silenced. But as Sloane starts digging into the past, the question isn't whether she can uncover what really happened that night...it's what will remain of her family if she does?
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