'Brilliantly unnerving ... expertly crafted' Sunday Times, Thriller of the Month
'Jackson raises the stakes again and again' Guardian
'Finely paced, shrewdly observed ... Mother May I is a thinking (and feeling) reader's thriller' Wall Street Journal
It's every mother's worst nightmare.
'If you ever want to see your baby again, GO HOME.
Tell no one.
Do not call the police.
Do not call your husband.
Be at your house by 5:15 PM.
Or he's gone for good...'
To get her son back alive, Bree must complete one small but critical task. It seems harmless enough, but this one action comes with a devastating price. And now Bree finds herself complicit in a terrible crime, caught up in a tangled web of secrets that threatens to destroy the perfect life she has built.
Mother May I is a pulse-racing, heart-pounding thriller that will have you turning the pages in the race to save Bree's baby, and find the kidnapper.
Praise for Joshilyn Jackson
'Jackson writes the kind of book that will set even the most blameless on edge, leaving us to wonder who might know our imperfect histories' Christina Dalcher
'A master of domestic suspense' Entertainment Weekly
'Wonderful – suspense and surprises, real characters and a scary, ominous backbeat' Lee Child
Bree Cabbat, the narrator of this gripping domestic thriller from bestseller Jackson (Never Have I Ever), is luxuriating in a life beyond anything she imagined growing up poor in the Georgia sticks until her infant son is snatched at a musical performance she brings him to at the exclusive Atlanta private school her two teenage daughters attend. After demanding that Bree not contact either law enforcement or husband Trey, a wealthy and socially prominent attorney who's out of town on business, the kidnapper makes it clear she's seeking not money but to settle some sort of personal score. When following the woman's initial instructions goes horrifically wrong, a desperate Bree reaches out for help to a lifelong friend, a former Atlanta detective turned investigator at Trey's firm. As the intrepid, sympathetic pair scramble to suss out the kidnapper's identity, they make some extremely disturbing discoveries that could blow up the life Bree loves. A few of the final twists come off as far-fetched, but the dark secret at the novel's heart rings all too true. Jackson knows how to ratchet up the suspense. \n
A Thrilling Read
Whose up for a dark and thrilling tale that will shock you to your very core and have you racing through the pages unable to tear yourself away? If you answered “I am”, then this is definitely the book for you. Joshilyn Jackson will take you hostage and will not let you go until the very last page in her latest thriller Mother May I.
This is only my second read from Joshilyn Jackson and once again she had me glued to the pages as she took me into the story alongside its lead Bree, where we both got caught up in a dangerous game where the stakes could not be any higher. It is amazing what a mother is willing to do when faced with the unthinkable.
I really liked Bree and found that I could resonate with her. You could feel her fear and pain through the prose as she is caught up in her worst nightmare. I enjoyed how she took matters into her own hands, enlisting the help from an investigator friend as she learns about her sons kidnapper and why her family became a target for them.
Mother May I has shades of a gothic fairytale, is thought provoking, compelling and very addictive. The plot is strong and offers great characterisation, the writing is flawless and captivating as it draws you in. A very enjoyable and entertaining read all round, I look forward to reading what Joshilyn Jackson comes up with for her readers next.
Disappointing after Never Have I Ever
American actor turned author. Eight previous novels, including Never Have I Ever (2019), where a mysterious new member shakes up the local book club something fierce. A strong four stars from me.
Bree is a wannabe actor from somewhat straightened circumstances when swept off her feet by a too-good-to-be-true Atlanta lawyer ten years her senior who comes from a wealthy, well-connected family. She becomes his second wife, has a family of 3, and lives the life of a well-to-do Atlanta Mom who doesn't need to work because hubby makes squillions. Things go haywire when her infant son is abducted, almost from under her nose, at a middle school musical rehearsal involving her talented 13-year-old daughter. The kidnapper wants revenge against her husband's philandering legal partner for reasons that are only revealed gradually, and coerces our gal into committing a crime: a biggie too. She enlists her best pal (male) from schooldays, who is an ex-cop turned investigator for hubby's law firm, and still nurses a major crush to help sort things out, which they do in the end. Hubby turns out to have a dark past of the #metoo variety.
Clear, crisp prose that builds pace well and includes an array of plot twists and turns. The narrative alternates POV between Bree and the ex-cop with the crush, with her in the first person and him in the third, which seemed a little odd, but what would I know? Much of our gal's part came off like gushy chicklit to me, and the less said about the happily ever after ending the better.
Ms J attempts to tick all the women's empowerment boxes felt clunky. Disappointing after Never Have I Ever.