Don’t start Don’t Go after dinner, unless you want to stay up all night. As always, Scottoline weaves an addictive, page-turning tale that’s impossible to put down until the third-to-last chapter. Sadly, after a terrific, 350-page roller-coaster ride of plot twists and unpredictable, exhilarating hairpin turns, the novel’s rushed and uneven “happily ever after” is so unrealistic, pat and jolting, the reader is liable to get whiplash.
Dr. Mike Scanlon’s life is spiraling out of control. He’s discovered that nothing and no one — not his seemingly perfect wife Chloe, who died in a tragic accident while he was serving two tours in Afghanistan; his infant daughter Emily, who doesn’t remember and fears him; nor his loyal sister- and brother-in-law, who have raised Emily during Mike’s deployment — are what they seemed. Now, struggling with a grievous injury, paralyzing PTSD and horrible suspicions about his late wife’s secret life, Mike must come to terms with his shattered illusions in order to become the father Emily needs. (ST. MARTIN’S, Apr., 384 pp., $14.99)