Winner of the Edgar Award for Best Paperback Original.
Reminiscent of the bestsellers of Laura Lippman and Harlan Coben—with a dose of Big Little Lies or Stranger Things—an absorbing, addictive tale of psychological suspense from the author of the highly acclaimed stand-alone novel What Remains of Me and the USA Today bestselling and Shamus Award-winning Brenna Spector series, in which a seemingly open-and-shut police case with a clear-cut hero and villain turns out to be anything but simple.
Late one night in the quiet Hudson Valley town of Havenkill, a distraught woman stumbles into the police station—and lives are changed forever.
Aimee En, once a darling of the ’80s pop music scene, claims that a teenage boy stole her car, then ran over another young man who'd rushed to help.
As Liam Miller’s life hangs in the balance, the events of that fateful night begin to come into focus. But is everything as it seems?
The case quickly consumes social media, transforming Liam, a local high school football star, into a folk hero, and the suspect, a high school outcast named Wade Reed, into a depraved would-be killer. But is Wade really guilty? And if he isn't, why won't he talk?
Told from a kaleidoscope of viewpoints—Wade's mother Jackie, his younger brother Connor, Aimee En and Pearl Maze, a young police officer with a tragic past, If I Die Tonight is a story of family ties and dark secrets—and the lengths we'll go to protect ourselves.
A violent carjacking sends shock waves through sleepy Havenkill, N.Y., in this moving character-driven standalone from Edgar-finalist Gaylin (What Remains of Me). The incident leaves high school football star Liam Miller, who was run over while apparently trying to stop the thief, fighting for his life. Police officer Pearl Maze takes the initial report from badly shaken former pop star Amy Nathanson, a resident of nearby Woodstock, for whom the stolen vintage Jag is the only vestige of her '80s glory days as a one-hit wonder. Some of the details in Amy's account, such as having her window rolled down at a stop sign on a freezing cold night, strike Pearl as unlikely. As for the culprit, suspicion falls on high school pariah Wade Reed, who's rumored to be a Satanist, after finger-pointing from Liam's friends on social media. What really happened that night will take Pearl's considerable detective prowess and courage to figure out. Though the fast-paced plot takes a few implausible final twists, the novel's lasting impact comes from its indelible portrait of people in crisis.
But rather predictable in the end.