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Chapter 3 - Stolen

As I paged through my book log recently I discovered that I have read a lot of books where people have either had their identify stolen or they pretend to be someone different from who they are. These books are almost always psychological thrillers. I started to think about why that theme intrigues and I thought about how clowns or people with masks are scary. When you meet someone you assume (at least I do) that what you see is what you get. Only upon knowing that person better do you realize that that assessment may not be entirely true.

We all put on masks from time to time I guess. I'd like to think the masks are to showcase our best selves. The books I'm going to tell you about are people who have either assumed someone else's identity or pretended to be different than who they really are.

The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell - Adopted as a baby, Libby Jones receives a letter telling her about her birth parents and her inheritance, a large mansion in a posh area of London. As she delves deeper into the background of her identity she finds that all is not as she thought. In addition there seems to be someone hiding in her new house...

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave - How well can you really know the person you are married to? Before her husband disappears he leaves a note for Hannah, his wife of a year. It simply says "Protect her." Hannah knows exactly who the note refers to - her 16 year old stepdaughter. What Hannah doesn't know is why. A series of twists and turns lead this book to an interesting conclusion.

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett - The Vigne twins, two African American girls who could pass for white are destined to lives of servitude in their small Louisiana town in the 1960's. After they run away to escape this future, they split up. One taking a more traditional path and the other passing for someone she is not. This is a well crafted novel about self-preservation and living as someone else.

The Housekeeper by Natalie Barelli - Claire's childhood fell apart at the seams when her father is accused of a crime so when she sees the accuser, Claire grown now, decides to get even. What better way to do this than within her nemesis's own house. Applying for the job of housekeeper, Claire finds she is not the only one in the household to have secrets. This book will definitely keep you guessing.

The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine - One of my favorite psychological thriller books and one I recommend often at the store, Amber Patterson is tired of being overlooked. She decides she wants the life Daphne Parrish takes for granted - a handsome, rich husband, a beautiful house in an exclusive neighborhood in Connecticut, and two lovely little girls. As she infiltrates her way into Daphne's life before long Amber becomes a "trusted" part of the family and then...things go awry. This is a hard-to-put-down kind of novel.

Do you have any favorite thrillers with the changed identity theme? Let me know as I'd love to read them!


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