After Anna by Lisa Scottoline

Genre: Suspense/Mystery
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Author: Lisa Scottoline
Release Date: April 10, 2018

After Anna tells the story of Dr. Noah Alderman. He's a single dad. After meeting his soulmate, Maggie, he remarries. His young son is thriving under his stepmother's attention. They're an incredibly strong family unit.

As happy as she is, Maggie can't help but want to know her daughter. After postpartum psychosis, Maggie had to walk away. Maggie went through therapy and is fine, but she was never a part of her daughter's life. Anna is now 17. Maggie is delighted when Anna reaches out.

Soon, Anna moves into their home. She becomes another piece of their family unit. Noah begins to see things, but Maggie's love has her blinded to the truth. Their strong family unit is now being torn apart. Things take a tragic turn when Anna is murdered and Noah becomes the prime suspect.

I wanted to like Maggie. I really did. She was such a great mother to Noah's son. Yet, when Anna came into the story, Maggie's weakness started to shine. I get loving your kid, but the things she put up with drove me nuts. I also hated how quickly Anna came into their lives and no one questioned it. As Anna started wrapping people around her fingers, I was angry. I didn't want to read anymore. I also didn't want to stop reading.

The story is partially a courtroom drama. A lot of the story takes place in the courtroom with Noah on trial for Anna's murder. The past chapters build up the relationships between the characters. That's how the story goes. There is Before Anna and After Anna. Before Anna delves into the events that led up to the trial. The "after" part includes the trial and aftermath. It's in the "after," where I was on the edge of my seat.

This isn't a happy story. It's quite maddening, sad, and frustrating. The truth is that it's also incredibly addicting. You cannot stop reading because you need to know what happens. As mad as it made me, I also couldn't put it down.


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