Confronted by a restraining order and the threat of a lawsuit, failed journalist Leah Stevens needs to get out of Boston when she runs into an old friend, Emmy Grey, who has just left a troubled relationship. Emmy proposes they move to rural Pennsylvania, where Leah can get a teaching position and both women can start again. But their new start is threatened when a woman with an eerie resemblance to Leah is assaulted by the lake, and Emmy disappears days later.
Determined to find Emmy, Leah cooperates with Kyle Donovan, a handsome young police officer on the case. As they investigate her friend’s life for clues, Leah begins to wonder: did she ever really know Emmy at all? With no friends, family, or a digital footprint, the police begin to suspect that there is no Emmy Grey. Soon Leah’s credibility is at stake, and she is forced to revisit her past: the article that ruined her career. To save herself, Leah must uncover the truth about Emmy Grey—and along the way, confront her old demons, find out who she can really trust, and clear her own name.
Everyone in this rural Pennsylvanian town has something to hide—including Leah herself. How do you uncover the truth when you are busy hiding your own?
Megan Miranda is a fabulous story teller. I enjoyed All the Missing Girls because of her writing style and loved how she told the story backwards. Perfect stranger is not told in reverse order but the writing is equally interesting. I like the way she transitions between the past and the present to spin a suspenseful tale. Miranda’s writing is dark and the settings are somewhat dank, leaving a lingering feeling of dread while reading her novels.
Leah Stevens is an interesting character. She is forced to leave her job as a journalist because her integrity is questioned; she borders libel in one of her articles. Instead of standing up for herself and fighting, she “runs” straight into another situation that could lead to worse consequences than the last.
Emmy, the character without a voice, leads Leah to a small town in western Pennsylvania, a fresh start. Leah accepts a position as an English teacher. Not soon after moving to the new town, she begins to receive anonymous phone calls and text messages. Leah has a stalker, but having been an investigative journalist and not wanting to give away anything about her past, she doesn’t tell anyone about it.
The fun doesn’t stop there…a woman who resembles Leah is brutally beaten and a man who works at her school is arrested and interrogated for the crime. At the same time, Leah’s roommate, Emmy, goes missing.
This book is filled with twists and turns, and the pacing is great. I love the way the author ties the pieces of the story together. Anyone interested in reading suspense novels should definitely check this out!