Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Evidence of Life by Barbara Taylor Sissel

Today I’m hosting a stop on the Evidence of Life blog tour, along with a Q & A from the author, Barbara Taylor Sissel and a giveaway!

Evidence of Life

On the last ordinary day of her life, Abby Bennett feels like the luckiest woman alive. But everyone knows that luck doesn't last forever. As her husband, Nick, and daughter, Lindsey, embark on a weekend camping trip to the Texas Hill Country, Abby looks forward to having some quiet time to herself. She braids Lindsey's hair, reminds Nick to drive safely and kisses them both goodbye. For a brief moment, Abby thinks she has it all—a perfect marriage, a perfect life—until a devastating storm rips through the region, and her family vanishes without a trace.
When Nick and Lindsey are presumed dead, lost in the raging waters, Abby refuses to give up hope. Consumed by grief and clinging to her belief that her family is still alive, she sets out to find them. But as disturbing clues begin to surface, Abby realizes that the truth may be far more sinister than she imagined. Soon she finds herself caught in a current of lies that threaten to unhinge her and challenge everything she once believed about her marriage and family.
With a voice that resonates with stunning clarity, Barbara Taylor Sissel delivers a taut and chilling mystery about a mother's love, a wife's obsession and the invisible fractures that can shatter a family.


Abby is a wife to her husband Nick and mother to her two children, Lindsey and Jake. She believes that she is living the perfect life, well maybe not perfect, but a good one. Lately however she has been noticing changes in her husband’s behavior. She silently questions things that have happened, but never makes the effort to talk to Nick about them. In hindsight I imagine she wishes she had.

I’m not sure how I would have handled a situation like this one. I think if the bodies of my husband and daughter were never found in a flood, a part of me would always hold out hope that maybe they were alive somewhere and one day we would all be reunited.

The police say it’s possible their bodies will never be found. Her friends and family even her son Jake try to encourage her to just move on with her life and create a new one. But Abby doesn't want a new life; she wants her old one back.

I admire Abby’s strength and determination in not giving up in her search. With their bodies and car missing, it does start to make her question. She needs closure; she needs to know for sure if they were really gone or if something else entirely occurred. Abby discovers that sometimes the truth can hurt more than a lie and once she begins her search, there is not going back…

“There was only one thing she knew for certain: She would never find the answers to her questions by staying here. And something else she knew: If Nick and Lindsey were still alive, they weren't coming home on their own.” - Barbara Taylor Sissel, Evidence of Life

I never felt bored while I was reading. The story flowed at a good pace. My heart squeezed for her and Jake and how they tried to deal with the situation as best as they could. I enjoyed it more than I had anticipated. It was an emotional read with real characters that I easily connected to and an intriguing mystery that kept me turning the pages. 

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5.

* I received this book from Liz Lauer/Meryl L. Moss Media Relations, Inc. as a part of the Evidence of Life Blog Tour in exchange for nothing but my honest review.*

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**AUTHOR Q & A**


What made you want to become a writer?
Reading. It beings me so much pleasure and joy. I wanted to see if I could pass the gift along.

You’re stranded on a desert island and only have three books in your suitcase, what are they?
Now this is impossible! I would want books that were thick and involved with compelling plots. Michener’s The Source might be a good one, maybe Faulkner’s Absalom, Absalom. I've been meaning to reread it to see if I can penetrate any more layers of its meaning. Maybe a volume of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essays, or a beautifully illustrated book of classical fairy tales. It would be very hard to decide.

If you could date any character from literature who would it be?
Oh, I really don’t know. I did kind of fall for the character of Dennis, the lawman I created in Evidence of Life, and I also loved the character of Ari Ben Canaan in Exodus. He was compelling, especially when he was played in the movie by Paul Newman.

What does your writing space look like?
It has two long library tables (I think other people might call them occasional tables) that hold reference books like my dictionary and thesaurus, and a world atlas. There’s my desk where my Mac sits. I also have a narrow, glass-door antique, drop-leaf secretary, where I store all of my old books. I love the look of the old, faded bindings. A lot of them are books I had as a child that I read to my children. Usually the room is fairly neat, but I reach a place with most projects where I can’t keep it that way, the numbers of scribbled-on notecards and scribbled-on post-its are piled and stuck everywhere. It looks very messy but there must be some kind of order to it that I  don’t consciously know until I straighten it up and can’t find that one particular note that I need. I’ve learned now to leave everything alone and only thoroughly clean at the end of each project, so sometimes there’s lots of dust. 

Is there a book you've  wished you never read?
I can’t think of one specifically. I know I’m not a fan of graphic horror, or graphic anything for that matter. I like the author to leave room for my imagination. I remember being devastated for days after reading Dalton Trumbo’s, Johnny Got His Gun. I’ve never forgotten that book.

Follow Barbara: Website | Twitter | Goodreads

5 copies of Evidence of Life are being given away on my blog.
To win a copy enter below! 

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1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a good mystery and I would love to read it.

    cenya2 at hotmail dot com