Book Reviews

Book Review: Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker

September 26, 2017


Fiction/Mystery Thriller

One night three years ago, the Tanner sisters disappeared: fifteen-year-old Cass and seventeen-year-old Emma. Three years later, Cass returns, without her sister Emma. Her story is one of kidnapping and betrayal, of a mysterious island where the two were held. But to forensic psychiatrist Dr. Abby Winter, something doesn't add up. Looking deep within this dysfunctional family Dr. Winter uncovers a life where boundaries were violated and a narcissistic parent held sway. And where one sister's return might just be the beginning of the crime.

Credits to:


4/5 ⭐s

First of all, thank you to BookOfTheMonth for my copy!

As it goes for any mystery thriller books, one cannot give out too much information or else you'll spoil the fun for everyone who hasn't read the book yet. So how do we go about this then? Let's go over the general themes in this book that will help you find out if this is the right pick for you.

This is a character driven book -

everything you'll read in here is based off of an alternating POVs between two unreliable narrators indicating their emotional problems that draws how the story progress and how it is viewed in retrospect. We have the sister who returned after disappearing for 3 years and a forensic psychologist who handled the case of the missing girls who never got over it. The girl tells hers in first person while the psychologist in third person POV so it was easier to tell whose story is who when you're reading it.

 The mystery is very intriguing -

we don't know what we're looking for in this book unlike other mystery thrillers which its whole plot is a question of who done it or why? This one is a complete blackhole. Are we looking for a dead body? or an alive and well person held captive? are we looking for killers? or do we want to find out what they did? It all goes down in the ending.

It discusses in details a personality disorder -

Pathological Narcissism is discussed thoroughly and what effects it has on the people close to the one that has it. It's too detailed in fact that at times it might have felt like you're reading a textbook. I must say though that yes it is textbook-like detailed however it is understandable even for people who has not studied the human mind. The author did a good job integrating common examples that can be observed by people on a day to day basis.

p.s. I may be bias with this topic as I am a Psychology graduate and this particular topic (or personality disorders in general) in my favorite subject back in uni. 

The details as it reached ending is everything -

my mind is racing with all sorts of thoughts about how this book will end but it keeps on twisting and turning until it reached a point where I gave up and just went in for the ride - and THAT for me is what a mystery thriller should be like. It should be unputdownable, it should bother your thought processes, and it should end with a bomb and well yeah, this one did.

Now you decide if this is your cup of tea!


All in all, I loved this book and was having a hard time putting it down when it's finally time to sleep. I finished this in under 2 days! Probably the only negative (not-so) thing I can comment about this is that some details are repetitive that may appear as if it unnecessarily prolongs the story. Somehow though, these details makes sense so I was not so bummed by it. It was my first time reading something from this author and I was not disappointed. Definitely recommended!

Until next read!

  1. Oo, this sounds like a great book! I love mystery thrillers! Recently I’ve been reading more fantasy and dystopian, but I love getting back to the mysteries, and this one sounds like a good one to do it with. Nice review!

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