Everyone in the quiet Jersey Shore town of Silver Bay knows the story: on a Sunday evening in September 1991, Ramsey Miller threw a blowout block party, then murdered his beautiful wife and three-year-old daughter. But everyone is wrong. The daughter got away. Now she is nearly eighteen and tired of living in secrecy. Under the name Melanie Denison, she has spent the last fifteen years in small-town West Virginia as part of the Witness Protection Program. She has never been allowed to travel, go to a school dance, or even have internet at home. Precautions must be taken at every turn, because Ramsey Miller was never caught and might still be looking for his daughter. Yet despite strict house rules, Melanie has entered into a relationship with a young teacher at the local high school and is now ten weeks pregnant. She doesn't want her child to live in hiding as she has had to. Defying her guardians and taking matters into her own hands, Melanie returns to Silver Bay in hopes of doing what the authorities have failed to do: find her father before he finds her. Weaving in Ramsey's story in the three days leading up to the brutal crime, Before He Finds Her is a stirring novel about love and faith and fear—and how the most important things can become terribly distorted when we cling to them too fiercely.
This is one excellent mystery novel. Michael Kardos has written a novel here that is almost impossible to put down. This is a unique story with varying timelines and many twists and turns; also, complex and well-developed characters and relatioinships. The storyline affords the reader a glimpse into the many facets of human nature. Characters are shown to be not just "good" or "bad" but more a complex mix of both. The author manages to show the "flawed" human in all its glory. This novel is exciting and was an unexpected pleasure to listen-to. The reason I did not give this novel five stars for story-line is because the teen-age female protagonist at times seemed too naive for me to fully fathom. Yet, her naivete is easily forgiven in exchange for the intrigue and well-crafted pleasure of this listen. Julia Whelan does a flawless job in narrating.
63 of 67 people found this review helpful
I am so glad I took a chance on this after reading the raves by other authors. I only half pay attention to these, but I've learned, I think, to trust certain authors not to BS and to read between the lines.
The cover blurb by Jeffery Deaver is so dead-on: Read a few pages of this novel and kiss the next 24 hours goodbye. I couldn't give it up, as it eased back and forth between 2 storylines: 1) a 17-year-old recently pregnant girl, who's been hidden away in WVa in witness protection since 1991 she was nearly 3, searches for the father she knows killed her mother and who she's always assumed wants to kill her; and, 2) back to 1991 in the days and minutes leading up to her mother's murder (mostly omniscent from her father's POV but some from her mother).
Plenty of twists and turns I cannot describe here without spoiling the book.
Julia Whelan's narration is outstanding.
I highly recommend this book.
89 of 97 people found this review helpful
Not a bad story; much better than I anticipated.
I downloaded this book about 4 months ago and then kept putting off reading it. You have to be careful when you delay like this because the mood you were in when you got the book may be long gone by the time it comes to reading it! That was my trouble. Every time I perused my “to read” list, I skipped over it wondering why I bothered in the first place.
All this time later, I finally bit the bullet and I am not disappointed. The story was interesting, I did not see ANY of the twists coming and I was always interested to know what happens next – the perfect trifecta for appreciating a mystery.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Thank you to the prior reviewers who convinced me to purchase this book on the Daily Deal. Very well written and impeccably narrated, with resolutions coming from completely different directions than anticipated. I lollygagged in bed listening through to the end, three hours past the point where I should have been out in the world being theoretically constructive. Finished nicely with all threads wrapped up (although not all in the hoped-for direction, which should probably earn an extra star) and did not drop me off into the abyss abruptly, so that I was able to put down a loved book with a warm afterglow, instead of the faint disappointment of a great book ended too quickly.
Well done, Michael and Julia, and I recommend without reservation.
p.s. I had failed to note the author until I was writing this, and expected the author to be a woman - an extra half-star to Michael for doing a fine job of speaking for Melanie.
25 of 28 people found this review helpful
I chose this book because it was an "Audible daily deal" so I got it for $4.95. I love their daily deals because it gets me to read all kinds of books I would otherwise overlook!
Before He Finds Her about a girl who has been in the witness protection program her whole life and as she is on the verge of 18 she decides to go on an adventure to solve the crime herself.
It's also told from the perspective of her father, beginning before the crime she is hiding from him because of and working its way up to the event. A great twist is that he seems to be a likable , albeit troubled man.
Before ending I should also add that Julia Whelan does a good job as a narrator, an important thing to note as the narrator can make or break the whole audiobook.
31 of 36 people found this review helpful
Like many mystery/suspense novels, you can tangle the web as much as you like, but at some point, you need to unwind it. Some unwind perfectly, and some not so much. This book builds a very good mystery but like many others, the ending falls a little short. But not by much. Excellent writer. And fantastic narrating by Julia Whelan. Worth the credit.
57 of 67 people found this review helpful
Loved this book! Kept me guessing until the very end. Characters were well developed, and the narration was wonderful!
You won't regret this purchase!
35 of 42 people found this review helpful
I loved the book. The suspense was awesome and left me guessing till the end. As usual the narrator is awesome
22 of 27 people found this review helpful
Yes, the story is implausible (although not as implausible as it seemed at the beginning). Still, it was entertaining enough, with lots of twists that were actually surprising. The characters never seem quite real, though, and some of them behave in ways that seem very "out of character." I would give Michael Kardos another chance. Just for entertainment.
17 of 21 people found this review helpful
I really struggled at the beginning to get hooked but once the story got going it was definitely worth finishing with some good twists towards the end.
23 of 29 people found this review helpful