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Reviewed by Divine Zape for Readers' Favorite
Inside Looking Out by Jeanne Tompkins opens on a strong note. While jogging, a police officer discovers a young woman who has been attacked, lying in the undergrowth of a nearby copse and covered in blood, her T-shirt torn to ribbons. Christopher Sky McKenzie calls for an ambulance and while at the hospital, he waits for her to wake up so he can get a statement. She does wake up, but with no memory and unable to speak. When Christopher meets Lindsay Shawcross again, it is several years later in court where she is charged with the murder of her mother, Dorothy Shawcross. What follows is a psychological thriller that explores themes of parenting, abuse, and a journey towards inner freedom for a young woman.
Jeanne Tompkins has written a story that is psychologically engaging and that makes a powerful case against child abuse. The protagonist has suffered a very painful trauma and continues to suffer at the hands of her mother. From the very beginning, the author forces readers to ask questions. The way Lindsay is presented is intriguing and I wanted to know who she is, who attacked her and why, and what eventually happens to her. There are passages that will arouse the indignation of readers, scenes that inspire pathos in them, and strong moments in the narrative that will have readers emotionally connected to the characters. Inside Looking Out is a compelling book with a very strong message, gripping and infused with realism.