A fun thriller that quickly turns sinister.
Wendy Heard is the author of suspense and thrillers for adults and teens, including You Can Trust Me, The Kill Club, She’s Too Pretty to Burn, and Dead End Girls. Heard has spent most of her life in Los Angeles, which is on fire more than she would prefer, and she can often be found haunting local hiking trails and bookstores. She loves all things vintage and has a collection of thrillers and adventure books from the ’80s.
There are so many things I enjoyed about this book! The two main characters, Summer and Leo, were a lot of fun and gave off serious Thelma & Louise vibes as they drove around California on an endless adventure. The characters were well fleshed out and complex, and their unbreakable friendship was one of my favorite things about this book. Summer’s character was intriguing, and I enjoyed learning about her childhood including the tricks her mother taught her while living on the street. Leo’s character was also dark and interesting, and I was immediately pulled in by the disappearance and murder of her sister all those years prior. The eventual reveal of the killer was clever and terrifying. And after the scene in the remote cabin between Leo and Micheal I tore through to the end, determined to find out if the two women would be reunited.
The chapters were on the longer side but it didn’t slow the pace at all. I loved the alternating POVs, and the descriptions of California were so immersive it was easy to slip into the story. It definitely caught me off-guard (in a good way) when the tone shifted from light-hearted adventure thriller to sinister serial killer vibes, only making all the more addictive to read.
For readers who enjoy compelling female protagonists, dual POVs, and stories about adventure.
Published June 13th, 2023
Summer and Leo would do anything for each other. Inspired by the way each has had to carve her place in a hostile and unforgiving world, and united by the call of the open road, they travel around sunny California in Summer’s tricked-out Land Cruiser. It’s not a glamorous life, but it gives them the freedom they crave from the painful pasts they’ve left behind. But even free spirits have bills to pay. Luckily, Summer is a skilled pickpocket, a small-time thief, and a con artist—and Leo, determined to pay her own way, has learned a trick or two.
Eager for a big score, Leo catches in her crosshairs Michael Forrester, a self-made billionaire and philanthropist. When her charm wins him over, Leo is rewarded with an invitation to his private island off the California coastline for a night of fabulous excess. She eagerly anticipates returning with photos that can be sold to the paparazzi, jewelry that can be liquidated, and endless stories to share with Summer.
Instead, Leo disappears.
On her own for the first time in years, Summer decides to infiltrate Michael’s island and find out what really happened. But when she arrives, no one has seen Leo—she’s not on the island as far as they know. Plus, there was only one way on the island—and no way off—for the coming days. Trapped in a scheme she helped initiate, could Summer have met her match?