Synopses & Reviews
The breakout author of The Forgotten Girl and Cemetery Girl, one of the brightest and best crime fiction writers of our time” (Suspense Magazine) delivers a new novel about a man who is haunted by a face from his past....
When Nick Hansen sees the young woman at the grocery store, his heart stops. She is the spitting image of his college girlfriend, Marissa Minor, who died in a campus house fire twenty years earlier. But when Nick tries to speak to her, she acts skittish and rushes off.
The next morning the police arrive at Nicks house and show him a photo of the woman from the store. Shes been found dead, murdered in a local motel, with Nicks name and address on a piece of paper in her pocket.
Convinced there's a connection between the two women, Nick enlists the help of his college friend Laurel Davidson to investigate the events leading up to the night of Marissas death. But the young womans murder is only the beginning...and the truths Nick uncovers may make him wish he never doubted the lies.
"Part mystery-thriller and part ghost story, McMahon's well-paced debut alternates smoothly between past and present. In the fall of 2002, 41-year-old Kate Cypher, a divorced Seattle school nurse, returns to New Hope, the decaying Vermont hippie commune where she grew up, to visit her elderly mother, Jean, who's suffering from Alzheimer's. Kate has avoided New Hope since the grizzly, unsolved murder of her fifth-grade friend, Del Griswold, 31 years earlier. Kate fears she betrayed Del, a free-spirited farm girl. Did her betrayal cause Del's death? Who killed Del? Another local girl is murdered in a similar manner at the time of Kate's return. Could the killer be loose again? Meanwhile, Jean appears to be possessed with Del's spirit and may have the answers to these questions. As Kate investigates, she learns stunning truths about many events and people from her youth. McMahon does a particularly good job of portraying the cruelty of school children." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Forty-one-year-old school nurse Kate Cypher has returned home to rural Vermont to care for her mother who's afflicted with Alzheimer's. On the night she arrives, a young girl is murdered—a horrific crime that eerily mirrors another from Kate's childhood. Three decades earlier, her dirt-poor friend Del—shunned and derided by classmates as "Potato Girl"—was brutally slain. Del's killer was never found, while the victim has since achieved immortality in local legends and ghost stories. Now, as this new murder investigation draws Kate irresistibly in, her past and present collide in terrifying, unexpected ways. Because nothing is quite what it seems . . . and the grim specters of her youth are far from forgotten.
More than just a murder mystery, Jennifer McMahon's extraordinary debut novel, Promise Not to Tell, is a story of friendship and family, devotion and betrayal—tautly written, deeply insightful, beautifully evocative, and utterly unforgettable.
About the Author
Jennifer McMahon is the New York Times bestselling author of Don't Breathe a Word, Dismantled, Island of Lost Girls, and Promise Not to Tell. She grew up in suburban Connecticut and graduated from Goddard College. Over the years, she has been a house painter, farm worker, paste-up artist, pizza delivery person, and homeless-shelter staff member, and she has worked with mentally ill adults and children in various capacities. She lives in Vermont with her partner, Drea, and their daughter, Zella.