ABOUT THE BOOK:
At nineteen-years-old, college student Josie Stratton was kidnapped by a madman and held shackled for ten months in an abandoned warehouse before she finally escaped her hellish prison.
Eight years later, when the body of a young woman is found chained in the basement of a vacant house, Cincinnati Police Detective Zach Copeland is instantly reminded of the crime committed against Josie Stratton. Zach was just a rookie on the perimeter of that case, but he’s never forgotten the traumatized woman with the haunted eyes.
As more information emerges, the crimes take on an even more sinister similarity. But Josie’s attacker died by suicide. Does the city have a copycat on its hands? A killer who picked up where the original perpetrator left off? Or are they facing something far more insidious?
Josie has spent the last eight years attempting to get her life back on track, but now there’s a very real chance she could be the unknown suspect’s next target. As Zach vows to keep her safe, and Josie finds herself responding to him in a way she hasn’t responded to any man in almost a decade, the investigation takes on an even more complex edge of danger.
As past and present collide, Josie and Zach are thrust toward a shocking and chilling truth. A revelation that threatens not only Josie’s life, but everything she’s been fighting so desperately to reclaim.
‘Casus belli.’ Where the blame lies.
Mia Sheridan continues to surprise and thrill with this darkly captivating romantic suspense story that was a real page-turner! I was a bit taken aback my the book description because while I love a good dark romance and thrillers, I wasn’t sure how Mia Sheridan was going to deal with this subject matter. Well you can rest assured that ‘Where the Blame Lies’ will keep you on your toes and guessing until the very end.
The story alternates between the past and present, describing Josie Stratton’s horrifying ordeal at the hands of a sadistic madman. How she survives her abduction and captivity is riveting reading. It seems now, however that there might be a copycat on the loose who is once again terrorizing young women. Josie has fought to build a new life for herself but is still plagued by troubling memories of her time in captivity.
“Starlight in a blackened sky. Blinking to life where before only darkness existed.”
Detective Zach Copeland is assigned to the current case and is determined to get to the truth. This book is not for the fainthearted and while there is a beautiful romance woven into the story, the crime/thriller elements are brutal. Mia Sheridan certainly doesn’t hold back with all the suspenseful details.
Josie is determined to help the police track down the truth even if it means re-living the most painful parts of her past. Detective Copeland is patient, meticulous and non-judgmental. I loved the romance between the two main characters, it was a slow-build, very realistic and not without its difficulties because of Josie’s past trauma.
“Maybe we’re all just going through the motions, trying to rework the stories that ended so badly in our early years. Trying so desperately to play a different role in the tragedies of our lives, yet using the same flawed script.”
Mia Sheridan has created a surprisingly readable story that will please even the most seasoned thriller readers. I applaud the author for stepping outside her usual genres with this book. The ending was satisfying, and the characters were very real and believable. I read this in one day because I literally could not put it down. If you are looking for a heart-pounding romantic thriller with a strong heroine, you will love ‘Where the Blame Lies’. I am looking forward to more books like this in the future from Mia Sheridan.
(ARC was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.)