Monday, May 15, 2017

This Is Why I Can't DNF Books - You Were Here review

TITLE: You Were Here
AUTHOR: Gian Sardar
PUBLISHERS: G.P. Putnam's Sons

FROM GOODREADS: Death, accidental and early, has always been Abby Walters's preoccupation. Now thirty-three and eager to settle down with her commitment-shy boyfriend, a recurring dream from her past returns: a paralyzing nightmare of being buried alive, the taste of dirt in her mouth cloying and real. But this time the dream reveals a name from her family's past. Looking for answers, Abby returns home to small-town Minnesota for the first time in fourteen years, where she reconnects with her high school crush, now a police detective on the trail of a violent criminal. When Abby tries on her grandmother's mesmerizing diamond ring, a ring she always dreamed would be hers, she discovers a cryptic note long hidden beneath the box's velvet lining. What secret was her grandmother hiding? And could this be the key to what's haunting Abby? As she begins to uncover the traces of a love triangle gone shockingly wrong nearly seventy years before, we, too, see that the layers of our lives may echo a past we’ve never known. With mesmerizing twists and a long-buried secret that may finally rise to light, You Were Here weaves together two worlds separated by decades, asking if the mistakes made in past lives can ever be corrected in the future, and if some souls are meant to find one another time and time again.

So this book just reinforced my inability to DNF books. Let me explain.... This book starts out really slow. So slow that I was seriously considering DNF'ing which I never do. Yet, I read on and after I read the first 100 pages or so, I became so engrossed in the book that I read the remainder 260ish pages in one evening. So see, if I HAD DNF'd this book, I'd have missed out on what really was quite an enjoyable read.

Abby left her hometown almost 17 years ago and has never returned. Prior to her leaving, she would have horrible nightmares where she was in a grave being covered by soil. Abby's life is not what she wants. Her boyfriend is working desperately at trying to sell his screenplay and he tells Abby if he does, they can finally get married and all the rest of the pieces will fall into place. Abby feels that Robert is just continuing to put her off and that marriage isn't a priority for him. Suddenly, Abby's nightmares return so she decides to go to her class reunion and try to figure out what is behind her dreams once and for all. While in town, Abby reconnects with her teen crush, Aiden, who is now a detective trying to solve a serial rapist case. She also begins to investigate the disappearance of grandmother's best friend and see if it somehow ties in to her horrible nightmares.

As mentioned, I found the first 100 pages or so of this book to be extremely slow and almost dull. The reader gets a little insight into Abby's past and the nightmares which have haunted her for years. Also during this time the reader is introduced to all of the major players. The story is told in dual timelines and once the story picks up, it really is quite an interesting tale. There are several twists and turns throughout and the resolution of the mystery was extremely satisfying. I enjoyed Abby's character for the most part and found her fascination with death creepy yet wonderful.

Besides the slow start, there is one other element to this book which really bothered me. It is full of cheating. Spouses, paramours, boyfriends, girlfriends, best name it and they are either cheating or hiding the secret for someone else. I am not a huge fan of cheating and yet I still found this book to be interesting and tolerable. Just be aware if that is something that usually puts you off on reading a book.

"You Were Here" is a strong debut and one of the better thrillers I've read lately. I feel that it's probably going to get a lot of comparisons to "Gone Girl" which I hope isn't the case because I actually consider that the kiss of death. If you have been curious about this one from the start, I would recommend you go ahead and pick it up. However, if you easily DNF books, please realize you have to get through the first 100-120 pages for it to get good. If that's too long a wait, then you might want to pass this one by.



  1. Glad the book turned out well in the end and the effort was worth it. I think we both know I would've DNFed it! *grins*

  2. This is why I can't DNF a book either. So glad this one paid off for you!

  3. I've got this one on my TBR so I'll have to keep your words in mind when I'm trudging through the slowness. :)

  4. I've had that happen to me with multiple books, and it's also one of the reasons I almost never DNF lol. Glad it worked out well for you with this one!

  5. oh I wish I had that DNF inability! I've passed so many great books because I'm no patient enough! Good for you Barb! Glad you were rewarded and enjoyed the book :)

  6. The struggle is real! I try to press on, too, but I get stuck in books for so long. I'm glad it worked out! :)