Publication Date: January 26, 2012
Retired Psychologist Joe O'Laughlin has recently found something to do other than dwell on his Parkinson's Disease. He has started teaching at the local University and it is there where he gets asked to help talk a potential suicide down off the bridge.
Joe did not plan on getting involved, but he did. And when he could not save the woman he took it to heart. What would cause a normally sane woman to throw herself off of a bridge to sure death. When the woman's business partner is found naked and handcuffed to a tree a day or so later, Joe (and the police) realize that there is something more sinister at play. Will they be able to find out who or what is behind these "suicides" before another woman loses her life?
Shatter is a most interesting thriller that takes a look at how far a mother will go to protect her child. In the first two cases there isn't even verifiable proof that their children are in danger. Just the treat of harm to their children was enough for them to go to extremes. It is certainly worthy of discussion. Would you be willing to jump off a bridge if a man on the phone told you that he had kidnapped your child?
It wasn't until I was more than halfway through this book and went in search of the synopsis that I realized it was part of a series. It was not obvious in any sort of way, and that is always a good thing. Shatter was also the first non-Agatha Christie mystery set in England that I remember reading in recent days. It was well written and the kind of page turner that is full of shocking turn of events. I also found it interesting the way that Joe O'Laughlin deals with his disease. And in some cases he doesn't deal with it at all.
Bottom line, I think that fans of Linwood Barclay or even Tana French will enjoy Shatter. It is a well written mystery/suspense thriller that takes on every mother's worst nightmare. How far would you go to save your child?