Review: Call Me Elizabeth Lark by Melissa Colasanti


Your daughter went missing twenty years ago. Now, she’s finally back. You thought she had returned a few times in the past, and your husband tells you she’s not the one, but you feel it in your bones.

Now, what will you do to keep her home?

Twenty years ago, Myra Barkley’s daughter disappeared from the rocky beach across from the family inn, off the Oregon coast. Ever since, Myra has waited at the front desk for her child to come home. One rainy afternoon, the miracle happens–her missing daughter, now twenty-eight years old with a child of her own, walks in the door.

Elizabeth Lark is on the run with her son. She’s just killed her abusive husband and needs a place to hide. Against her better judgment, she heads to her hometown and stops at the Barkley Inn. When the innkeeper insists that Elizabeth is her long lost daughter, the opportunity for a new life, and more importantly, the safety of her child, is too much for Elizabeth to pass up. But she knows that she isn’t the Barkleys’s daughter, and the more deeply intertwined she becomes with the family, the harder it becomes to confess the truth.

Except the Barkley girl didn’t just disappear on her own. As the news spreads across the small town that the Barkley girl has returned, Elizabeth suddenly comes into the limelight in a dangerous way, and the culprit behind the disappearance those twenty years ago is back to finish the job.

My opinion:

I received a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Call Me Elizabeth Lark by Melissa Colasanti is a mystery/thriller.

It has one very intense and complicated story. The book is written from the three main female characters’ point of view. Myra, the mother who lost her eight-year-old daughter. Gwen, who is the eldest daughter, and felt responsible for her younger sister’s disappearance. And the third is Elizabeth Lark, who appeared with her son in the inn after killing her husband. The descriptions of the sceneries were so graphic you could easily transfer yourself there. The author here mentions some very serious issues, domestic abuse, and mental illness, and I feel that she trod carefully over the subjects. Since they are triggering for many people, the way you will talk about it matters a lot in a story. The characters were interesting, they had differences and some similarities. They appeared «broken» but on different levels based on their grief and their demons. Myra was the character that tore my heart with her need to find her missing kid.
I was impressed with Elizabeth though, she was a mix between a woman on the run and a «detective».
Small town mysteries are classic but this one has an interesting twist. It’s a family drama filled with lies,
death, and psychotic people. At some point, I had figured out the suspect but I could have never expected the revelation that came towards the end, it was mind-blowing.

This book is a serious page-turner. It was not easy to put that down so I finished it in a day. I highly recommend it to mystery lovers. I will rate it with 4 stars.

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