You Will Know Me by Megan Abbott
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Katie Knox's life basically revolves around her teenage daughter, Devon, an extremely talented gymnast who is on a path to the Olympics. Katie and her husband, Eric, have given up their lives, their time, and their money for Devon's dream. But when a sudden death hits their close gymnastic community a few weeks before an important competition, this dream suddenly seems in jeopardy. Devon's fellow gymnasts and their families are awash in gossip as their beloved coach and his family deal with an unexpected loss. Katie wants only to focus on healing and moving on, but she finds her family drawn into the swirl, as each day reveals more surprises about her daughter and husband.
This novel was a very realistic look at the gymnastics world. You could easily picture Devon's gym and the cutthroat parents who populated it, forcing the weight of the world on Devon's shoulders, as they believed the gym's success rides on her shoulders. She captured their gossip and competition quite well. It also did an excellent job of portraying the lengths parents will go to support and protect their children. I guessed the outcome of this one fairly early on, but still found it fairly tense and suspenseful. In fact, this novel is almost too tense at times to be enjoyable, even though it's rather well-written and quite compelling. It's a trainwreck; you can't walk away, even though you know how it will end.
The book is intriguing in that it's written from Katie's perspective, despite the fact that it's basically all about Devon. This adds to the suspense -- how reliable is Katie, and how much does she truly know about Devon, her husband, and her younger son? There are times when you'd really love to key in on what Devon is thinking (and what she knows), which just adds to the tantalizingly frustrating element of this novel.
Overall, I enjoyed this one, though it wasn't one of my all-time favorite thrillers. Still, it's a quick, compelling read. 3.5 stars.
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