Hi guys, this review is going to be about my favourite book and this is a reread. It’s a very intense book from start to finish and I highly recommend it to just about everyone, if you want to know why you’ll have to read the review! 😊 Hope you enjoy the review.
Author: Robert R. McCammon
Page Count: 560
Publication Date: First published in 1990 by Grafton
Adrift in the 1980’s and slowly losing her mind, a heavily armed former ’60s radical kidnaps a baby with the hope, deluded as it may be, of returning her life to simpler times. The child’s mother, though, isn’t about to take it lying down and, along with a tracker, begins a cross-country chase to get her child back.
Since this a reread and my favourite book, I have a bit more to say than usual, I am very excited to do this review. Because of this though, it might seem like I’m giving away huge spoilers to some of you who haven’t read the book (yet) but don’t worry, they’re not really main plot points or plot twists, it’s just the first couple of chapters summarised so this’ll be a fairly spoiler-free review. But it’s crazy so get comfy.
A woman named Mary Terrell, known as Mary Terror, sees a message in a Rolling Stone magazine. To her, it’s a bitter-sweet message, a symbol of hope and a chance to return to what she once was but it’s also a reminder that she is not who she once was.
A pregnant woman named Laura Claybourne finds out her husband is cheating on her. When she follows him to his mistresses house, her water breaks and she makes her way to the hospital. She gives birth to a baby boy named David.
The day after Laura gives birth to her son, Mary Terror enters the hospital and kidnaps him.
After Laura lost her baby, she didn’t do much more than cry and panic for the safety of her child. She does this for a few days while the FBI tells her they’re looking for her child. Laura gets fed up waiting around for the FBI to slowly stop working the case and she goes out to get her baby back herself.
Mary Terrell, she got her nickname Mary Terror from her days in a former terrorist group called the Storm Front, she killed many people in different, horrible ways. Now though, she’s gone into hiding, moved to Atlanta, Georgia and goes by the name of Ginger Coles and works at a Burger King. As Ginger Coles she tries to keep her anger at bay, she does everything she can so no one will know who she is or what she is capable of doing.
Laura Claybourne is married to Dough Claybourne. She used to be a hippie in her youth but she wasn’t one who picked up a gun. Now, she works as a journalist and does social pieces and book reviews. One of the books she reads is called Burn This Book, a book that mentions the Storm Front. Other than that she has no idea who the Storm Front is or Mary Terror is. Unlike Mary Terror, Laura Claybourne is rich, her husband has a job that pays well, her own job pays well. They have two cars, a Mercedes and a BMW, big living space and many material possessions.
Jack Gardiner, or Lord Jack, he’s the leader of the Storm Front. The man Mary Terror loved.
Bedelia Morse, known as Didi, was another member of the Storm Front. Her life after the Storm Front is not as bad as Mary Terror’s because unlike her, she doesn’t have violent urges or anger instead she has regret and is plagued by her actions in the group. She tries to do good. She does pottery, something she did way back even before her Storm Front days.
The book mentions other characters, cops and FBI who we only get to know for a few chapters or pages, the author of Burn This Book and his wife along with the other members of Storm Front (some mentioned more than others).
I mentioned in the first paragraph that this book is very intense but it’s also a suspenseful psychological-thriller so it’s not incredibly fast pace but there’s still always a lot happening. There are two main characters the story follows, Mary Terror and Laura Claybourne. Each woman gets every other chapter to tell their side of the story. It’s not a first-person story so their names are mentioned in the first paragraph but you can always tell whose chapter it is before you read their names (if it’s further in the paragraph) from the way they view the world around them. McCammon does an amazing job at giving the women their own voices. Not only does he give the two main woman their own voices, but he also does a good job at giving everyone their own voice, even the characters we only really read about for that one chapter, they’re their own person. Some he made very weak and unsure, some he made very stubborn. All of them were interesting to read about and see how they’d help the women or if they just got in the way of the women.
The book starts off with Mary Terror, it starts us off seeing how truly messed up she is, I’m either nearly in tears or in tears just reading that part which is more of an introduction to her character before the story really starts. After that it goes into Laura’s world, it starts off lighter, happier already on the first word of her chapter. It’s the exact opposite of the woman we read in the chapter before. The book is in parts, each part has 6 chapters each, each other chapter is Mary’s or Laura’s and in each part, the story grows darker and more intense.
Sure, the story isn’t that horrifying, there’s no jump-scares or monsters but reading this is horrifying. The way Mary Terror’s mind works, the whole feeling of her chapters and the way Laura’s lighter chapters grow darker and her mind also changes. If reading those aren’t eerie enough, the thought of how realistic it is is. It’s one of those stories that if it was real, you’d have that thought of “no, this only happens to other people in the news.”, it’s a very real fear in this book, in these characters, these chapters and I love that. Robert R. McCammon is an amazing writer and I love this book so much and cannot recommend it enough!
I hope you enjoy this review, let me know in the comments what you thought of the review or if you’ve read the book and what you thought about it! 🍓