Desert Isle Keeper
Forget You Know Me
Forget You Know Me is the latest offering from author Jessica Strawser. It’s a book that can’t be easily categorized, but it’s one I’m definitely glad I picked up.
Molly and Liza used to be the best of friends. In fact, there was once a time when neither woman could imagine life without the other one in it. But now, Molly is married with two children, and Liza has moved away, and the unthinkable has happened. Molly and Liza really don’t know much about each other’s lives anymore.
One evening when Molly’s husband Daniel is away on a business trip, Molly and Liza decide to get back and touch. Once Molly’s children in bed, the two engage in a long video chat. The conversation doesn’t seem to flow the way it used to, and both women are a little uncomfortable. When Molly leaves the room for a moment to check on a crying child, Liza is glad for the chance to collect her thoughts. But then, she catches sight of something happening in Molly’s home, something no one is supposed to see.
I’m sure you’re wondering what Liza witnesses, but telling you would spoil things in a major way, so you’ll have to trust me when I say that Molly is utterly terrified by what she sees. She calls the police and then jumps in her car, driving all night to get to Molly’s side. She’s sure her friend has been horribly traumatized by this event, and she wants desperately to be of some assistance, but when she arrives at Molly’s house, she is ordered to leave. Liza is understandably baffled by Molly’s strange behavior, but she doesn’t think she can just return home and forget what she saw.
Matters are taken out of Liza’s hands when a horrible fire breaks out at her apartment building, gutting it completely, and she decides to stay with her brother and his wife while she gets her renter’s insurance sorted out. She’s also hoping to eventually get to the bottom of whatever is going on with Molly, even if her friend seems to want to pretend the two of them were never all that important to one another.
The question of whether you’ll enjoy this book depends largely upon your expectations when you start reading. If you’re looking for the next twisty psychological thriller, you might be disappointed. Forget You Know Me does contain a few good twists, but they’re not what really stood out to me. Instead, the novel’s greatest strength lies in the ever-changing relationships between the characters; so if you’re looking for a novel that takes an unflinching look at what it really means to be a good friend, this just might be the book for you.
Molly deals with a great deal of chronic pain brought on by an undiagnosed illness, and I’m so glad Ms. Strawser chose to incorporate that into this story. So many of today’s heroines are perfect in every possible way, but those heroines don’t always feel real to me. Molly, with her deep yearning to understand why her body is betraying her, feels utterly relatable, even though I have no personal experience with the level of pain she endures on a daily basis. I loved that the author didn’t simply pay lip service to Molly’s pain. Instead, she manages to make it an integral part of Molly’s character, something I wish more authors would choose to do.
Both Molly and Liza are well-drawn, incredibly relatable characters. I didn’t always agree with the choices they made, but I always felt I understood what motivated them to act the way they did. I’m also really pleased with the amount of personal growth they go through over the course of the book. I didn’t necessarily think everything would be sunshine and roses for them at the novel’s end, but I got the firm impression that both women were well on their way to righting some of the wrongs they had committed.
Forget You Know Me is a story that celebrates love and friendship in all their many forms. The suspense is compelling, and the author manages to strike the perfect balance between the action-packed scenes and those that are more introspective. I’m not sure I enjoyed this as much as Ms. Strawser’s previous book (Almost Missed You), but it definitely has a lot to recommend it, and I can’t wait for readers to give it a shot.