Certain things in relationships are “red flags,” such as jealousy, controlling behavior, and kidnapping fiancés. Once you see a few of these red flags, you start to figure that breaking off the friendship / dating / hanging out thing might be a good idea. That’s situation I found Emmy, the main character of Paul Pilkington’s The One You Love, embroiled in. Though I found the book thoroughly enjoyable (and let me say that again, thoroughly enjoyable!), there were a few times when I felt like grabbing Emmy out of the book and knocking some sense into her. The reason why? She ignored a lot of red flags, and in more than one person. Now on to the good stuff:
The One You Love is a decent length for a thriller, batting at 298 pages. In addition to that, it’s written by a man from England, and I just love reading British-style conversation and phrasing—I know, I’m such an American. The basic gist of the plot is Emmy, a small-time actress shooting for the stars, is engaged to be married when her fiancé Dan all of a sudden disappears. His brother, Richard, is found at their apartment unconscious and with life-threatening injuries.
Emmy is joined by her best friend Lizzy and her brother William in trying to solve the mystery of Dan’s disappearance and Richard’s attacker. Pilkington does a superb job of adding twists and turns, showing both Emmy’s group and the police uncovering different pieces evidence in each chapter. It led me to suspect no less than five different people of the crime throughout the course of the book, and that, my friends, is excellent thriller writing!
I give the book four stars simply because Emmy acted like a crazy person half the time, e.g. refusing to talk to the police when she found evidence because she felt she needed to get to the bottom of the crime herself. I understand humans occasionally do dumb stuff like that, but after about the third time I began to wonder if Emmy might have some sort of complex. Even when her best friend in the whole world, Lizzy, suggested she not visit the home of a creepy ex-admirer, Emmy forged ahead as if she really believed nothing would happen.
I recommend this fabulous read to all lovers of mystery and complex plots. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.