Title: The Resentment
Author: T.O. Paine
In The Resentment, a family is torn apart by death, lies, and secrets. As Lauren Kaine clutches her husband’s hands, she knows her life is about to change forever. Dangling off the side of a bridge, he’s slipping through her fingers, and she can’t hold him for much longer. Someone hunted William down, but why? She doesn’t know who they were or what they wanted, but she’s going to get revenge.
As she grieves William’s death, Lauren begins to receive strange calls. Black cars circle her home, and an old man seems to be everywhere she is, and her teenage son is drifting apart from her. Calls turn to threats, and soon, Lauren doesn’t recognize herself. Her grief transforms to rage, and she’ll do anything to protect her family and William’s legacy.
The book starts off with an explosive, intense first chapter that sets the plot in motion. Readers will be thrust into the heart of the story without the distraction of any flashbacks, exposition, or fluff. With plot twists and mysteries from the first page, the book is sure to hook readers’ attention right away.
The book’s plot is filled with mystery, and so are its characters. The book is told from multiple perspectives, and we get to learn about each character on a deeper level. Though it opens in a way that seems plot-driven, the narrative is actually heavily character-driven. Each character is paired with an intriguing backstory and complex character traits that make them feel like real, three-dimensional people.
Each character’s personality is also highlighted differently. Whether it’s through emotion, a habit, or an addiction, each character has a crutch they use to cope with pain, and these details make them imperfect, complex, and fun to read. There are many emotional scenes where characters are raw and real. Their vulnerabilities and pain points are constantly tested, making them incredibly sympathetic and easy to connect with.
By the middle of the book, the pacing lulls a bit. New information is revealed slowly, and characters’ decisions are made one step at a time. Incorporating changes in the mood, setting, dialogue/monologue would show how each chapter is different from the rest and help readers feel like progress is happening even when there aren’t major movements in the plot.
As a way to grapple with their individual struggles, many of the characters have specific mantras or coping mechanisms that they use constantly throughout the book, causing many of their thoughts to sound repetitive. Though it’s compelling to read about them fighting their internal battles, at two-thirds of the way through the book, we’re eagerly waiting for the characters to make some kind of decision or change. For good or for bad, we want to see a turning point, and by the time it comes, it feels a little late.
In The Resentment, murder, crime, and mystery lurk around every corner. This dark thriller is intense, fast-paced, and sure to keep readers on the edge of their seats. With complex characters, high stakes, and plot twists galore, The Resentment has all the elements of a page-turning classic thriller.
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