REVIEW: I Know Who You Are, Alice Feeney

Monday, 5 August 2019

When Aimee comes home and discovers her husband is missing, she doesn’t seem to know what to do or how to act. The police think she’s hiding something and they’re right, she is – but perhaps not what they thought. Aimee has a secret she’s never shared, and yet, she suspects that someone knows. As she struggles to keep her career and sanity intact, her past comes back to haunt her in ways more dangerous than she could have ever imagined.

Whilst, a plot of fame and fortune is normally one that never fails to draw me in (I mean, seriously, give me 1782727 books about unhappy actresses and I will be there every damn time), the content and execution of Alice Feeney’s I Know Who You Are was just not up to par. Everything to do with acting and that whole world was poorly-constructed window dressing meant to give the protagonist some sort of personality (or just ‘pizzaz’ or whatever) and the plot focused instead, on every single minute, horrific, gratuitous detail of her traumatic childhood.
And, this is not me being all naive and saying that no one has traumatic childhoods. I know they do. Believe me. But, I am starting to become more and more frustrated with a genre that continues to discount the suffering of real people and employ the same tired, over-done tropes in their protagonists’ backstory just to juice them up a bit.
Oh, so you’re writing a thriller with a female main character? Oh, how wonderful. Let me guess: is she an alcoholic or a victim of horrific abuse? Well? Which one are you picking? It has got to be one, she cannot be neither.
It is like, every time I delude myself into thinking that female characters are finally being allowed some substance and some agency, I open a thriller and step back fifty years.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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