Martin's Must Reads: 'Gone Tonight'
“My mother walks through our tiny living room, her eyes sweeping over our old blue couch and coffee table, before she briefly disappears into the galley kitchen. 'I just had them in my hand.' Her voice is tinged with something darker than frustration as she begins another lap. I should jump up from the couch and help her look for her keys so she isn’t late for her shift at the diner. But I don’t want her to notice I’ve begun to tremble.”
I’m Betty Martin with "Martin’s Must Reads" and those are the opening lines to Sarah Pekkanen’s newest novel Gone Tonight. Twenty-four year old Catherine has just graduated from nursing school and is soon leaving to begin her job at John’s Hopkins Hospital. She’ll be living away from her mother, Sarah. She’s looking forward to being on her own for the first time in her life. Until now it’s been just her and her mother. But now her mother is showing signs of dementia and Catherine knows from her work at a retirement facility that as the dementia worsens, Sarah will not be able to live alone.
Catherine decides to search for any extended family that could give her insight into her mother’s family history. She soon discovers that her mother is not who she believed her to be.
The chapters alternate between Catherine and Sarah’s voice. Over the years, Sarah has kept her distance from her coworkers, has constantly tracked Catherine, spent time at the library’s computer checking on a couple of people and reviewed her plan for a quick getaway. As the flyleaf says this is “an emotionally thrilling powerhouse of a novel about motherhood, young love, protection, and the violence that lies dormant in the least expected places.”
If you’re looking for a thriller with a mother and daughter as the key players, then you must read Gone Tonight by Sarah Pekkanen.