Review of Sidetracked by Brandilyn Collins
Overview from www.barnesandnoble.com: Thirty-four-year-old Delanie Miller has fled her dark past and is now settled into a quiet life in small-town Kentucky. She has friends, a faux "family" who lives in her house, and a loving boyfriend who may soon ask her to marry him. Her aching dream of a husband and future children are about to come true. But protecting this life of promise means keeping a low profile and guarding the truth of her past-from everyone.
Delanie Miller has spent years rebuilding her life after her mother’s murder only to have it torn apart by the murder of her best friend. This is the point where the story begins, well, almost.
The book is really two stories in one. The first tale is the one where Delanie finds her best friend dead, apparently murdered, and sees a suspect in the vicinity. The second is Delanie’s own story from her past of being falsely accused of murder herself.
Delanie’s story alternates between these two equally captivating stories. Both involve her though the one involves her as a suspect while the other features her as an eyewitness.
I have to confess that I was captivated by them both. I wasn’t sure whether I wanted to go back to one story when I was in another one and the best part of the story was how the two mysteries were connected to each other. Each one was not isolated from the other one but it was necessary to understand Delanie’s earlier life to understand what was happening in the present.
I also liked the way the author didn’t just change point-of-view from one chapter to the next but allows the reader to always at least get two chapters of both of Delanie’s story. And we know where we are not only by the name that Delanie is called by but also the point-of-view. Third person is Delanie as a young teenager and first person is Delanie telling her story as a friend to a murder victim who comes upon the body shortly after death.
The characters in this book are also interesting. Delanie’s housemates are not like most characters that I have read in previous books. The town of Rosebud itself also seems to live and breathe like a separate character all its own.
And while the plot is mostly believable, I like that there is not a lot of swearing in the dialogue or first person narration. Not much in here could be found objectionable I think, other than the crime scene details.
Underlining the entire story is Delanie’s dilemma about living a life that is lie. She can’t tell those she loves about her deception for fear of getting hunted down by her nemesis Tina. She even feels that she can’t talk to God about it as she desperately wants to and that hurts her the most.
When she comes face to face with the truth, she wonders if she will have to turn away. Or can she face it head on and finally stop running from the past? Read the book to find out for yourself.
Contains: some violence but not excessive