You Are Not Alone is a disturbing, slow-burn story, that shows how easily any one of us could fall under someone else’s spell despite glaring red flags. Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen have proven, yet again, that they are masters at crafting a sinister story that’s hidden under an ordinary mask.
Shay Miller wants to find love, but it eludes her. She wants to be fulfilled, but her job is a dead end. She wants to belong, but her life is increasingly lonely.
Until Shay meets the Moore sisters. Cassandra and Jane live a life of glamorous perfection, and always get what they desire. When they invite Shay into their circle, everything seems to get better.
Shay would die for them to like her.
She may have to.
One of the first thoughts that struck me as I made my way through this book was how cult-like this situation was. It’s the perfect storm- Shay is down on her luck, feels lacking in every way, and is looking for something and someone to make her feel whole.
The Moore Sisters prey on that vulnerability. They take her under their wing and give her the attention and love Shay has been craving. This effectively puts blinders on Shay as she continuously tries to explain away the alarming behavior the Moore Sisters exhibit.
If, like me, you have a morbid curiosity with cults then you know it’s classic cult recruitment. On the outside looking in, it’s easy to spot the warning signs. I wanted to shake Shay and say, “Open your eyes!” But then on the other hand, I can see why she fell for it. Imagine going through life and everything you’re doing seems wrong. You feel so wholly alone that the moment you feel love or find purpose, a meaning for your existence, you bite at it like a starving dog.
I love how real the characters felt in this story. I know I mention that quite frequently but it’s something I always look for in a novel. I can enjoy some outrageous characteristics, like the ones present in Behind Closed Doors, but I connect more with the real and raw undertones and these authors throw those in.
While Shay took main stage, it was Cassandra and Jane Moore that blew me away. There’s something about posh, gorgeous characters, with dark intentions that fascinate me. Both women were adept at manipulating others. Despite the the havoc that ensued around them, they had a strange moral compass and loyalty to their inner circle. This in no way made them better people but it did make for interesting character dynamics.
The story did take awhile to unfold. However, there was subtle creepiness that oozed from each page of this book that held your interest. We had a front row seat to the manipulation and gas-lighting of Shay courtesy of the Moore Sisters. It got to a point that even as a reader you were unsure of who to trust completely.
At times, it seemed far-fetched. While I would love to believe that this network of women could exist in the real world, it did cross the realm of believability. The authors did however toe the line of believability quite well, peppering it in amongst the turbulent relationship between Shay and The Moore Sisters.
I had no idea where this story would go. I had a few theories of course but they were loose and ultimately didn’t pan out. But the ending of this book was definitely worth the wait! I could not wait to see how everything would tie together.
I love an ending that re-writes what you thought you knew was going on the whole time. This 360 degree twist is something these authors have mastered. The ending in You Are Not Alone is one that leaves you with questions. It impacted every event and makes you realize that it’s the ones you least expect who are capable of the most damage.
This week, I have a double pairing coming your way! First up- the wine! At first this was only going to have musical pairings. But then I got the idea that this should be paired with a rosé. For such a long time, Shay saw The Moore Sisters through rose-tinted glasses. Things seemed to get better and those “positive changes” blinded Shay to the warning bells that were blaring around her.
I chose Dark Horse’s 2019 Rosé because it was on sale. But any rosé of course will do.
Now to our second pairing. This one was a bit more tricky. Thanks to the music gods, one of my playlists included two songs that were utterly perfect for You Are Not Alone:
Playing With Demons – Autumn Sky
Smother Me – Kelaska
I hope you enjoy the music, wine, and You Are Not Alone. If you’re a fan of An Anonymous Girl, then I have a strong feeling you will love this book!
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars