#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Witness by Nora Roberts #Crime #Suspense @NoraRobertsFans #Audiobook

Renee at It’s Book Talk began this meme as a way to share old favourites, as well as books that were published over a year ago. Not to mention those that are languishing on the to be read pile for whatever reason.

This audiobook was released in 2012 and narrated by Julia Whelan. At the time this was one of my favourite Nora Roberts’ standalones and it was also one of my first reviews, before I really knew what I was doing.

Elizabeth had a very sheltered and structured upbringing with her cold and unloving mother, who only had a child (by a donor) for twisted reasons.  She was always a model child until, at the age of 17, an act of defiance changed her life forever.

Imagine the thrill, excitement and apprehension, after always following ‘the rules’, of planning something she’s never been allowed to do, wanting just to be like everyone else, doing something her mother regards with disdain, and yet Elizabeth knows an average teen takes for granted.

So, while her mother is out of town Elizabeth goes to the mall for some new clothes, jeans and make up. There she meets Julie, a girl she remembers from high school.  They team up, have a shopping spree and decide on a night on the town.

Elizabeth’s small rebellion ends in murder and a life turned upside down.  She enters a witness protection program, which doesn’t go as planned, and she ends up running for her life.

Years later Abigail Lowery lives very privately near a small town in Arkansas with an arsenal of firearms and an extremely well-trained guard dog, Bert.  The local sheriff, Brooks, is intrigued by the town’s ‘hermit’ and suspects all is not as it seems. He doesn’t give up and eventually begins to bring her out of her shell with his easy-going charm and appeal. Together they decide enough is enough and a certain situation needs to be resolved if Abigail and Brooks can have a life together.

Julia Whelan does a great job and I enjoyed her narration a lot. Her characterisations aren’t over the top and there are definite distinctions between the characters, which brings them and the story to life.

One of my favourite Nora Roberts titles, the story flows seamlessly. I like the way Elizabeth is introduced as a teenager and knowing her story make her actions completely understandable. There are shocking and sad events, the characters are warm and realistic and the bad guys are sinister and menacing. 

Daughter of a controlling mother, Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking at a nightclub and allowing a strange man’s seductive Russian accent lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever.

Twelve years later, the woman known as Abigail Lowery lives on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she designs sophisticated security systems — and supplements her own security with a fierce dog and an assortment of firearms. She keeps to herself, saying little, revealing nothing. But Abigail’s reserve only intrigues police chief Brooks Gleason. Her logical mind, her secretive nature, and her unromantic viewpoints leave him fascinated but frustrated. He suspects that Abigail needs protection from something — and that her elaborate defenses hide a story that must be revealed.

With a quirky, unforgettable heroine and a pulse-pounding plotline, Nora Roberts presents a riveting new read that cements her place as today’s most reliably entertaining thriller — and will leave people hungering for more.


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