Title: Hidden in a Small Town
Author: Stacy M. Wray
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: June 14, 2018
Blurb: She’s being attacked, losing her footing as she falls to the dusty ground littered with pine needles. Scurrying like a crab, she attempts to stand and then… nothing.
A cold sweat trickles down Slater Montgomery’s spine as he struggles to control his breathing. It’s been years since he’s felt them – years since he’s seen them. The visions which nearly destroyed his childhood. Back then, ignorance and getting high were his allies, providing a false sense of security. Now? He can’t get her out of his head. The girl with the wild curls and fear-riddled eyes – the girl of his dreams.
Except, Slater knows this is no dream. It’s too real, too raw. The details, her emotion… before he can convince himself not to, Slater finds himself packing a bag and leaving his picturesque Wyoming home in search of the woman haunting his every waking moment. He just needs to see her once, just to be certain she’s safe. Just to be sure he’s not losing his mind.
What Slater imagined to be impossible – actually finding the mysterious woman – proves to be just the beginning. As secrets are exposed, Slater finds himself trapped in a web darker than he ever could have imagined. One which he’s not quite sure either of them will survive.
It started as a vision. A dream-like scene flashing through his mind. The ending?
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Hidden in a Small Town was an interesting and unique suspense with a touch of romance.
Slater was an intriguing character. He’s had strange visions off and on his whole life, but can’t explain them or understand why he receives them, so he would drown them in drugs and alcohol to make them go away… until he’s in the middle of teaching class one day and receives a vision of a woman being attacked. This vision he can’t ignore, so he decides to set out on an unplanned trip cross-country to find this mystery woman to make sure she’s okay, which leads him to a bar in a small town where he meets Nora – the girl from his visions. When Slater sees with his own eyes that Nora is okay, he can finally breathe again… but she is in trouble, except that he doesn’t realize how much until it’s almost too late.
This line from Slater’s POV sums up the book best: “I’m on summer break, and it’s currently turned into a psycho thriller.”
I loved the first half of the book, which was told from Slater’s POV. The mystery and the element of suspense had me turning the pages almost faster than I could read them. But the second half of the book was told from Nora’s POV and her irrational, obsessive and paranoid thoughts during her inner monologue were a bit of overkill and wasn’t consistent with her personality from the first half. It was like her character did a complete 180 and she went from being this fascinating and mysterious woman to a total wack job.
Another thing that bugged me was the visions not being explained. I needed to know why Slater had been having visions of Nora when she was in a crisis, but it’s barely even glossed over in the end. There needed to be more thought and depth put into that detail and not explained away as “just because”, which didn’t hold a lot of weight in the believability of the visions.
Overall, I loved the first half of the book, which I would rate as a solid 4 stars… but the second half fell a little flat for me. I think if Nora’s character would have stayed more consistent I would have enjoyed it as much as I did in the beginning. However, this was my first book by Stacy Wray and she did a really good job of delivering a unique and suspenseful story.