Still Water by Amy StuartStill Water by Amy Stuart

Still Water

byAmy Stuart

Paperback | May 8, 2018

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From The Globe and Mail bestselling author of Still Mine comes a new thriller featuring Clare and Malcolm, this time on the hunt for a missing mother and son in a town that is drowning in deception—Clare may be in her gravest danger yet.

HOW DO YOU FIND THE TRUTH IN A TOWN FULL OF SECRETS?

Clare has to find them.

Sally Proulx and her young boy have mysteriously disappeared in the stormy town of High River. Clare is hired to track them down, hoping against all odds to find them alive. But High River isn’t your typical town. It’s a place where women run to—women who want to escape their past. They run to Helen Haines, a matriarch who offers them safe haven and anonymity. Pretending to be Sally’s long-lost friend, Clare turns up and starts asking questions, but nothing prepares her for the swirl of deception and the depth of the lies.

Did Sally drown? Did her son? Was it an accident, or is their disappearance part of something bigger?

In a town where secrets are crucial to survival, everyone is hiding something. Detectives Somers and Rourke clearly have an ulterior motive beyond solving the case. Malcolm Boon, who hired Clare, knows more about her than he reveals. And Helen is concealing a tragic family history of her own. As the truth surges through High River, Clare must face the very thing she has so desperately been running from, even if it comes at a devastating cost. Compulsively gripping and twisty, Still Water is a deep dive of a thriller that will leave you breathless.
Title:Still WaterFormat:PaperbackDimensions:336 pages, 9 × 6 × 1 inPublished:May 8, 2018Publisher:Simon & SchusterLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1476790450

ISBN - 13:9781476790459

Reviews

Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good Story Not my favorite mystery of the year but still a good read
Date published: 2018-07-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Page Turning Thriller Still Water is an awesome follow-up to Amy Stuart's debut novel, Still Mine. The second book in a trilogy, this book could be read on its own, but reading the first book would definitely be helpful to put the plot into perspective. Full of twists to keep you reading right to the end. I am definitely looking forward to finding out what happens with Clare and Malcolm in book 3. If you are looking for a great summer read, this book would be a great choice. Highly recommended for fans of suspenseful thrillers. #IndigoEmployee
Date published: 2018-07-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Keeps getting better. I was very disappointed by Still Mine, but this book made up for it. The complexity was much greater making the book hard to put down. You need to get through Still Mine to fully understand the plot but the book is an easy read and well worth it to read Still Water.
Date published: 2018-07-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from good read I enjoyed Still Mine and i had no idea there was going to be a second book. I did enjoy this book. it was a little lackluster in compassion to the other novels I have read in the genre. Overall good read, great for the beach!
Date published: 2018-07-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Really enjoyed this mystery. Easy to get into and hard to put down. Recommended
Date published: 2018-07-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Fantastic Dark Mystery! One amazing read that I devoured this past week is Still Water by Amy Stuart. It is one of the quickest paced psychological mystery thrillers that I’ve read recently. This book is compelling as all get out - the story is based on Clare, who is hired to track down a missing woman and her son who mysteriously disappeared from a private home that’s run as a refuge for abused women. Clare has her own past demons that make the perfect cover for why she has shown up asking questions about where Sally and her son have gone. It doesn’t take long for Clare to realize that there are people besides her who are involved and also keeping secrets and that those secrets might be a lot darker than she ever expected. This book is the perfect summer read - fast, absorbing and with characters who are impossible to figure out. I absolutely loved how Amy wove pieces of every characters individual backstory into the present events without ever losing focus from the mystery in the middle of the story. And I LOVED Clare, as I knew I would when I realized that we had a perfectly flawed lead character (my favorite). While this is the second book featuring Clare, you definitely can read this as a stand alone, as it shares enough of Clare's back story to understand where she is currently. I cannot recommend this book enough. Although - ⚠️ Trigger Warning - this book DOES deal with extreme domestic abuse, and if that is a trigger for you, I would recommend proceeding carefully. . For those looking for a great mystery to add to your July TBR - give this one a go!
Date published: 2018-07-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from A boring mystery While I was not enamoured of Amy Stuart's "Still Mine", I read positive reviews about "Still Water" so I decided to read it. In this book, Clare and Malcolm are looking for Sally, a missing woman, and become involved with the dysfunctional Haines family. Through twists and turns the reader learns both the story of the Haines family and what has happened to Sally. Personally I found the book plodding. I don't think I'll read the third in this series, when it comes out.
Date published: 2018-06-09
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great thriller Another great book! remember to read the first one Still Mine I would recommend it for sure!
Date published: 2018-05-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Intriguing! When I first picked this one I did not realize it was sort of a sequel to author's STILL MINE (Which i have now added to my TBR!) - I say "sort of a sequel" because it's more of a standalone with some of the same characters from her first book. I really enjoyed this book and it definitely kept my interest all the way through. The main character, Clare did a great job of holding my interest and attention with her mysterious nature; I found her a bit confusing but this kept me intrigued until i began catching on to her purpose. Tensions are high among the characters and for the most part I found everyone somewhat unlikable. Lots of twists and turns and the ending really threw me off my sleuth game. Never saw THAT coming. I highly recommend this one and look forward to the possibility of a third installment by Amy Stuart (in the meantime, I'm going to read the first installment, STILL MINE)
Date published: 2018-05-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Captivating Thriller My thanks to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster for the free copy of this work. Before you read this novel, make sure you read Still Mine. The characters, narrative, and overall thrill will be lost on you if you miss the first entry in this series. Stuart has provided another thrilling page-turner. At the start, I was not all that impressed by Stuart's sophomore foray into fiction. As the novel progressed, however, I found myself more and more engrossed. The characters leap from the pages. The narrative drags you in. And the conclusion leaves you wanting more. Another great novel, by a brilliant author. I await the third entry into this series.
Date published: 2018-04-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read This is the first book that I've read by this author. I wasn't disappointed. Its a great read. I thought I had it figured out a couple of times, only to be surprised by the ending.
Date published: 2018-03-24

Read from the Book

Still Water Clare jolts upright, her hand at her mouth to stifle a scream. This room is blue with moonlight. Clare is on a single bed, its rusted joints creaking beneath her as she adjusts to sitting. She blinks. Bare walls, high ceiling, cobwebs wound tight in the corners. There is an open window, a hot wind lifting the corner of her bedsheet. The door is closed. Another single bed is pressed to the far wall, a woman lying facedown, asleep, as still as a corpse. A voice in Clare’s head. Do you know about this place? The woman in the bed lets out a long whine. Clare studies her in the low light. She looks to be in her midthirties, her face gently lined but tense even in sleep. She rolls onto her back, one arm flapped over the side of the bed. There is a zigzag of scars on her forearm and palm. Defensive scars, Clare knows. The kind that come from fending someone off. They spoke only briefly after Clare arrived last night, shook hands, maneuvered around each other in the small space. Raylene, she’d said. Her name is Raylene. The painted hardwood floor is warm under Clare’s feet. She stands and tiptoes to the window. This room is on the second story, a porch roof extending below her. Two hundred feet ahead, a river churns. A willow tree is perched so close to the water that its thick roots curl over the edge of the bank. A wooden cross has been nailed askew to its trunk. Clare twists her hair into a bun, then crouches to catch the breeze on her neck. Do you know about this place? Yes, Clare thinks, eyes on the wooden cross. I know about this place. This morning, there was the ocean. Two days ago, Malcolm Boon in the doorway of Clare’s room, a folder in hand. I have a new case, he’d said. A woman and her child have disappeared. How many days since she and Malcolm absconded from the hospital in Blackmore before the police could question them? How many days and nights did Clare spend in that motel room, drifting in and out of fitful sleep as she healed from the gunshot wound? She can muster only flashes. Bandages peeled back, the angry pink of her shoulder. A meal eaten on an unmade bed. A dusty glass of water Malcolm gave her to wash down the pills. The tide in and out on a beach. Malcolm there, Malcolm gone. And then, Malcolm arriving with the folder, offering her a new assignment. I think you’d be good for this case, he’d said. It’s a place called High River. A place for women like you. Something had roused Clare then. Her second case. A chance to right the wrongs of her first effort, to prove she might actually be good at this work. For twenty-four hours she’d pored over the folder: Sally Proulx and her two-year-old son, William, swept away days ago by the same river Clare watches out this window now. She’d papered the wall of her motel room with the timeline and backstory, photos and police reports. Photos of Sally in her previous life, before she and William arrived in High River. As Clare worked, a strange energy bolted through her. She couldn’t sleep. She wouldn’t talk to Malcolm. She cut back on the pills, holding her breath against the waves of pain and nausea. This time, she would be prepared. She would invent a version of herself that fit in at High River. Go undercover. Learn from her mistakes. It only occurs to her now that Malcolm probably chose this case because he knew it would hit too close to home for Clare to refuse it. With a gasp, Raylene sits up in bed, eyes wide. “No!” she says. “No.” Her eyes search the room until she spots Clare crouched at the open window. “It’s okay,” Clare says. Raylene’s eyes are unfocused, afraid. “You were dreaming,” Clare whispers. “Go back to sleep.” As if never awake, Raylene slides down the bed until her head lands softly on her pillow. Rain. Clare extends her hand through the open window to catch the first drops on her palm. She can never remember her own dreams. It used to suit Clare to forget, to abandon the details of her life before this one, those many months on the run before she met Malcolm Boon. Before Malcolm hired her to do this strange work of searching for lost or missing women, before her first case in Blackmore. Before the bullet wound and the blur of days spent recovering at that seaside motel. As they drove to High River yesterday, southward to this thick heat, Malcolm kept such quiet that when he spoke, his voice startled Clare. Remember, he said. We got lucky on the Blackmore case. We got lucky, Clare repeated, hand resting on the shotgun wound just inches from her heart. Lucky. What I mean, Malcolm said, is that missing women don’t always turn up alive. Forget luck, Clare wanted to say. Instead she looked out her window in silence, any change in the landscape masked by the gas stations and fast-food joints on repeat at every interchange. Mile after mile she mulled the details of the High River case. The little boy and his mother. Fixating on the details of the case distracted Clare from the pain in her shoulder, from the panic, the need for one more pill to take the edge off. She committed everything in that file to memory, every detail of Sally Proulx’s story absorbed, Clare an actor learning her part. This time, she will play Sally’s friend, a more direct route into the story than she took last time. But now that she’s here in High River, Clare feels uncertain she’s made the right choice in agreeing to take on this case. She stares at the white cross, at the swaying tentacles of the willow tree. Her chest hurts. Her shoulder hurts. It feels hard to breathe in this heat. She thinks of the letter from her husband that she carries in her bag. I can’t forget you, my Clare. You’re still mine. Eighteen, Clare thinks. Eighteen days since she left Blackmore with Malcolm, driving west to the ocean and that motel, the letter from Jason in her back pocket. Two hundred and twenty-five days since she left Jason, sprinting through the snowy back fields to the car she’d hidden under a sheet. A long-planned escape from a vicious husband. A life left behind months ago. But no matter how much time passes, she can’t seem to stop counting the days. Do you know about this place? It was Raylene who’d asked her this question as they lay in the dark last night, hours after Clare first arrived. Clare had feigned sleep instead of answering. Yesterday she’d felt certain she was equipped for this. She’d felt certain she’d learned all she could about High River, that this time her cover would be rock solid. Clare glances over her shoulder to Raylene, curled into fetal position, a pained look on her face as she sleeps. Clare looks back at the river, then presses the window all the way closed, her hands shaking with pain or withdrawal or panic, she can never tell which anymore. It doesn’t matter if I’m ready, Clare thinks. I’m here.

Editorial Reviews

"Dark and delicously disturbing debut."