A Familiar Sight by Brianna Labuskes #BookReview

Psychologist and criminologist Dr. Gretchen White is a specialist in antisocial personality disorders and violent crimes. She’s helped solve enough prominent cases for detective Patrick Shaughnessy that her own history is often overlooked: Gretchen is an admitted sociopath once suspected of killing her aunt. Shaughnessy still thinks Gretchen got away with murder. It’s not going to happen again.

When a high-profile new case lands on Shaughnessy’s desk, it seems open and shut. Remorseless teenager Viola Kent is accused of killing her mother. Amid stories of childhood horrors and Viola’s cruel manipulations, the bad seed has already been found guilty by a rapt public. But Gretchen might be seeing something in Viola no one else does: herself.

If Viola is a scapegoat, then who really did it? And what are they hiding? To find the truth, Gretchen must enter a void that is not only dark and cold-blooded, but also frighteningly familiar.

My thoughts on A Familiar Sight

A Familiar Sight was an Amazon First read, one of those times when I feel compelled to choose a book even if it doesn’t appeal to me that much. I liked the sound of this one, but it didn’t necessarily sound like a book I would rush out and buy. Perhaps if I had read any of Brianna Labuskes other books I might have thought different but I am guilty as the next book blogger (I think) of making snap judgements based on a cover or a book bio. I am not, however, the type of book blogger that won’t admit I made a mistake, because I really enjoyed A Familiar Sight.

I think my main concern when I first looked at it was Gretchen. I have a terrible time enjoying books where I don’t ‘bond’ with the central character. And I couldn’t see myself bonding with a sociopath, even one that helped the police. How wrong I was. I really liked Gretchen, her dry sense of humour and her ability to look at the world in a different way.

I also really liked the way the book was written. There was a slow build that built tension and gave the reader time to form their own theories (mine were wrong, until the end – when I think everyone would have figured it out). It was also very dialogue heavy. The action was often focused on interviewing witnesses or suspects. There wasn’t much running around or chasing down bad guys. It made for a different read for me, one that worked.

I’ve seen book two in this series is already out, and I’ll definitely be picking up a copy. Five stars!


Emma x

Find on Amazon UK

Find on Amazon US


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