Don't Turn Around
by Barry, Jessica

Cait and Rebecca, each with secrets to protect, find their lives in danger while on a desolate road in the New Mexico dessert and must learn to trust one another in this follow up to Freefall. 100,000 first printing.

Barry follows Freefall (2019) with a second propulsive psychological thriller, this time featuring two female characters who find themselves fighting for survival on a terrifying drive through the New Mexican desert. Cait Monaghan and Rebecca McRae are strangers brought together by necessity. Cait made the mistake of posting a story online about her sexual assault by a prominent country-and-western star and has been hiding from the social-media fallout. Rebecca made the mistake of marrying a politically ambitious man and has been compromising herself to be the model wife his campaign demands. She is carrying a baby with a devastating diagnosis. Cait is driving Rebecca to Albuquerque, where she plans to terminate her pregnancy, against her husband's wishes. A truck comes out of the darkness and menaces them for hours. Is it random harassment, or is the truck's diver targeting one of the women. But which one? In describing how they deal with the threat and the violence that ensues, Barry delivers hold-your-breath tension, while also addressing highly controversial and relevant women's issues. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Two very different women find themselves in a fight for their lives in Barry's adrenaline-spiked sophomore thriller. Austin bartender and aspiring journalist Cait Monaghan couldn't have known a disastrous one-night stand with an up-and-coming country musician would change her life. Cait is shocked when the guy wraps his hands around her throat during sex and chokes her until she nearly passes out. When Cait posts an anonymous piece about the experience online, it's a hit, but she's eventually outed as the author. Sympathy inevitably falls on the guy's side, and her life and livelihood are threatened. The vitriol of it all inspires her to seek out something different, and she volunteers with the Sisters of Service, who help women in crisis. Cait is to drive her new client, the imminently poised Rebecca McRae, from Lubbock to an Albuquerque clinic, but once they hit the road in Cait's ancient Jeep, they realize that someone seems determined to make sure they don't make it in one piece. Both women are hiding secrets, and Cait is convinced that the man menacing them with his pickup truck is aft er her, but Rebecca is equally convinced that she's his target. As the attacks escalate, Cait and Rebecca must work together to survive their hellish road trip, and Barry builds a believable bond between the two women, born of both necessity and something deeper. The present-day narrative is cut with tidbits from each woman's life, and Barry gets inside the heads of men both intimately and peripherally connected to them, offering a disturbing glimpse at what drives men to horrible extremes as well as the constant sacrifices, big and small, that women are expected to make for them. Barry's electric, perfectly paced tale reads like the gritty lovechild of Thelma and Louise and Spielberg's Duel, and readers will cheer for Cait and Rebecca all the way to the end of the road. An action-packed and fiercely feminist big-screen–ready chiller. Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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