I have been blogging for close to 5 years now, and it never ceases to amaze me that I, get access to the most amazing books before the general public! It’s such a privilege and am humbled every time I get book mail, whether it’s from the big guys in the industry or the smaller indie imprints! I truly am grateful!
When a well-known author acknowledges me on social media, I still squeal and go into fangirl mode. After all, these are our literary “rock stars”, and I don’t think I will ever tire of it, or take it for granted.
Which brings me to my latest ARC review, compliments of Simon & Schuster (Read “Big Guy”), and oh boy, it’s a fun one!
Expected Publication Date: February 25th, 2020
From the author of Are You Sleeping—soon to be an Apple TV series—comes a cautionary tale of oversharing in the social media age for fans of Jessica Knoll and Caroline Kepnes’s You.
Everyone wants new followers…until they follow you home.
Audrey Miller has an enviable new job at the Smithsonian, a body by reformer Pilates, an apartment door with a broken lock, and hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers to bear witness to it all. Having just moved to Washington, DC, Audrey busies herself impressing her new boss, interacting with her online fan base, and staving off a creepy upstairs neighbor with the help of the only two people she knows in town: an ex-boyfriend she can’t stay away from and a sorority sister with a high-powered job and a mysterious past.
But Audrey’s faulty door may be the least of her security concerns. Unbeknownst to her, her move has brought her within striking distance of someone who’s obsessively followed her social media presence for years—from her first WordPress blog to her most recent Instagram Story. No longer content to simply follow her carefully curated life from a distance, he consults the dark web for advice on how to make Audrey his and his alone. In his quest to win her heart, nothing is off-limits—and nothing is private.
With “compelling, suspenseful” (Liz Nugent) prose, Kathleen Barber’s electrifying new thriller will have you scrambling to cover your webcam and digital footprints.
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As someone who uses social media daily, and is actively trying to grow my accounts because my job demands it, this book made my skin itch! No, I do not post every moment of my life online, but even if you have a moderate presence, you are inviting people to peek into your carefully curated life.
What our MC Audrey does, is literally let the world know where she is, what she is doing, who she is with, even where she lives. It’s part of her ‘brand”. As her social media footprint is rather large, it was only a matter of time before she attracted an unwanted fan or two. Does she deserve it? Of course not! But it does make a reader think, and re-evaluate their own social media practices.
If you haven’t been living under a rock, you will know about the huge phenomenon known as YOU. It started as a wholly original, completely terrifying thriller by author Caroline Kepnes. Now it is a popular series on Netflix. What made YOU so scary, is that the “bad” guy did everything out of love for his victim.
Follow Me sees Audrey being stalked by someone similar to charming psychopath Joe Goldberg. Someone who has stalked her relentlessly on social media for years, and now that they live in the same city, someone who can stalk her IRL. And of course, everything this person does is done out of “love”.
Audrey starts out as a confident, slightly self-absorbed influencer. She’s lovely, successful, and charismatic, which makes it even creepier to watch her slowly unravel during the course of the story. As a woman who had everything, her world becomes very small and very scary.
I really enjoyed this book! I was glued to its pages from the first chapter, and for the first time in ages, I was surprised by the ending! I mean truly and properly stunned! That rarely happens with thrillers, no matter how twisty they are so kudos to the author for pulling the rug out from under me.
I highly recommend this book for fans of Kepnes of course, modern thrillers, and social media mavens who may have a fan watching a little closer than they’d like.
I really look forward to reading more from Barber. I can’t wait to see if she can surprise me again!
* Huge thanks to the author and Simon Schuster Canada for my ARC in exchange for an honest review