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Reviewed by Julia Hopkinson for Readers' Favorite
Vicki Tyley continues her rise to be one of the best modern thriller writers around with Brittle Shadows, a disconcerting but compelling mystery about one woman’s belief that her recently deceased sister did not, as recorded, take her own life. Jemma Dalton flies into Melbourne from Perth, convinced that her sister, Tanya Clark, did not commit suicide, despite her sorrow at the death, two months earlier, of her fiancé, Sean Mullins, in an apparent sex act gone wrong. Jemma moves into her sister’s erstwhile apartment, intending to deal with Tanya’s estate, but instead finds evidence that she did not know her sister as well as she thought. She becomes the focus of Tanya’s circle of friends and associates, one or more of whom seems to have something to hide.
I loved reading Brittle Shadows and think that it is Vicki Tyley’s best book so far; I could not put it down and read it in practically one sitting. Everything about it had me hooked from the first page: the premise, characters, dialogue, and plot development. The book was, as ever, well written, but flowed particularly smoothly, gradually piling on the tension and revelations, and revealing its secrets cleverly. The ending came completely out of the blue to me and not once did I guess it correctly. Tyley is very adept at creating strong and original female characters and female-driven stories, but this does not mean that they could not be enjoyed by everyone. Another five star recommendation to all thriller lovers.