This is that rare entity, a truly character-driven suspense novel. Anna and Michele, two women scarred by sexual violence, are victimized yet again by a narcissistic therapist, Dr. Robert Buchanan. Told in alternating points of view, the story of their relationships is absorbing and tantalizing, especially as Anna and Michele begin to solve the mystery of Robert's horrifying past. -- Ellen Booraem (Author: Texting the Underground, Small Persons with Wings)
A Tangled Web
Kirkus Reviews praises … the subtlety and psychological shrewdness of the author’s prose and dialogue, and the vibrant complexity of her characters. Robert, for example, is a masterpiece of bombastic narcissism … and Michele is a richly layered tapestry of delusional romanticism and self-centered money-grubbing, whose hard-boiled bravado masks her raw neediness. Even secondary characters possess a Dickensian piquancy; … it’s fascinating to get inside their heads. - Kirkus Reviews
An intense fast paced mystery with compelling characters. Hard to put down. A page turner right to the end with a great deal of insight along the way. If like me you love intelligent mysteries, this is a good one and it places an intelligent woman at the center of the story. -- Susan Griffin (Author: Woman and Nature, Pornography and Silence)
Van Alyn masterfully weaves the voices of a trio of characters into a tangled web of deceit, manipulation, personal struggles and desire. In this disturbing tale, psychiatrist Robert Buchanan, artist and patient Anna Sheffield, and jilted lover Michele Palmer are brought together from very different worlds. But they clearly speak from their individual perspectives to tell the story. Van Alyn's attention to detail allowed me to be present in each scene, understanding why thel players were making the choices they made, even as I told them "Don't do it!" If you enjoy reading about complex relationships and psyches, you will really enjoy reading this book. -- A. Flower
From the deep blue sea of Psyche, Abigail Van Alyn has crafted a dark pearl—one nacreous layer of grief, longing, fear and curiosity after another. I warn you, when you tell yourself you’ll turn off the light at the end of this chapter, you won’t. -- Flannery Clouse
5 Star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads – a sample
*****Strong, deep, fierce, passionate, intelligent.
***** What an imagination to be able to weave this suspenseful story so engagingly and at the same time to set the moral ground so high.
*****… the deep texture of the author's full imagining of every place and person, of the effect of every cause, can be seen and heard, tasted and touched, and understood.
*****I highly recommend this to readers who enjoy rich and real character development, complex relationship dynamics, and story-telling at a gripping pace. … a crime novel that is literary in the best sense.
***** OMG. I loved this book. Once I started reading it I had a hard time putting it down. The only reason I did was because I was giving myself whiplash.
Van Alyn's novel is a compelling journey into personal conflict. She masterfully develops the intricacies of her characters with fine details and smart dialogue. ... her writing shows a refined imagination at work. -- John Van Duyl
Praise for The Other Woman
A Dark Pearl