The Vanishing Year by Kate Moretti
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Confession: I hated the first 80% of REBECCA. Who cared about Manderley? Why didn’t this irritatingly passive narrator even give herself a first name? Frankly, I was ready for Mrs. Danvers to torch the place by chapter three. Then the last 20%? Wow. du Maurier hit the gas full throttle and the revelations made all the buildup worthwhile.
Kate Moretti took the concept of REBECCA and made it what it should have been—fascinating from the first page. That’s not to say THE VANISHING YEAR is a retelling of REBECCA; it’s much more than that, but I can’t make further comparisons without getting into spoiler territory. In VANISHING the narrator doesn’t have the problem of being unnamed, rather she has too many names. Zoe Whittaker, as she is currently known, is running. She’s escaped a dangerous past, jumped into a hasty marriage, and is seeking what all lost people seek—a true home. Her high society husband, Henry, smothers Zoe with gifts and trips, but refuses to talk about his dead first wife. When accidents begin happening, Zoe fears her old life is catching up to her. This is a thriller with non-stop twists that kept me guessing until the very end. The characters are perfectly shaded and the reveals are flawlessly timed. I can’t wait to see what Moretti will come out with next.

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