Monday, May 17, 2021

Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson


Bree Cabbat has an enviable life.  Born and raised poor in rural Georgia, she managed to get to college and afterwards, met Trey at a museum opening.  Trey is from money, an old family and a partner in a law firm.  They marry and as the novel opens, have three children.  There are two girls and Bree has just had a baby boy.  Trey makes enough that Bree is able to be a full time stay at home mother which is just what she wants to do.

But today is different.  While she is watching the rehearsal of a play one of her daughters is in, Bree turns her head to watch for a minute.  When she turns back to her baby, Robert, he is gone; his baby carrier and all.  In its place is a note telling her that someone has her baby and that she is being watched.  She is to go home, telling no one and wait for a call.  

Bree does that after dropping her girls off at her mother's condo for the weekend.  She doesn't know what she is facing and Trey is out of town.  When the call comes, it is not someone she expected.  It is an elderly woman and Bree remembers the old woman she had seen in her yard looking in the windows recently.  The woman says she has Robert and will kill him if Bree doesn't do what she wants.  She wants Bree to go to a party at the law firm that night and drug Trey's partner and oldest friend, Spencer.

Bree doesn't see how she can possibly get dressed and go to a party but the thought of Robert helps her get ready.  She manages to spike Spencer's drink and then everything goes wrong.  Bree is left to go home reeling.  She realizes that she needs help and confides in Marshall.  Marshall is a childhood friend and was married to Bree's best friend.  He is also an ex-cop.  When the woman calls again with more tasks and directions, the two of them create a plan to figure out what is going on and to get Robert back.  Will they succeed?

I listened to this novel and the narrator was a woman, telling the story from Bree's point of view.  The voice wasn't quite what I had imagined for Bree's voice but the narrator did a good job of reading and emoting without going overboard.  I needed to listen to this at regular speed since speeding it up lost the slow Southern drawl I was expecting.

This was my first Joshilyn Jackson but it won't be my last.  The story was fast paced and the twists and turns came roaring along when least expected.  Bree manages to find the courage to face an ugly story from the past and do whatever it took to get her child back.  The backstory was complicated and believable and the consequences were more than anyone would have expected.  This book is recommended for thriller readers.

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