Watch Me Disappear: A Novel

By Janelle Brown
Read by Tavia Gilbert  and Kaleo Griffith

13.26 Hours 07/11/2017 unabridged
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    ISBN: 9781524778262

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    ISBN: 9780525531968

The disappearance of a beautiful, charismatic mother leaves her family to piece together her secrets in this propulsive novel for fans of Big Little Lies—from the bestselling author of All We Ever Wanted Was Everything. “Tantalizing and twisty . . . a spider’s web of a novel . . . You won’t be able to put it down.”—Megan Abbott Who you want people to be makes you blind to who they really are. It’s been a year since Billie Flanagan—a Berkeley mom with an enviable life—went on a solo hike in Desolation Wilderness and vanished from the trail. Her body was never found, just a shattered cellphone and a solitary hiking boot. Her husband and teenage daughter have been coping with Billie’s death the best they can: Jonathan drinks as he works on a loving memoir about his marriage; Olive grows remote, from both her father and her friends at the all-girls school she attends. But then Olive starts having strange visions of her mother, still alive. Jonathan worries about Olive’s emotional stability, until he starts unearthing secrets from Billie’s past that bring into question everything he thought he understood about his wife. Who was the woman he knew as Billie Flanagan? Together, Olive and Jonathan embark on a quest for the truth—about Billie, but also about themselves, learning, in the process, about all the ways that love can distort what we choose to see. Janelle Brown’s insights into the dynamics of intimate relationships will make you question the stories you tell yourself about the people you love, while her nervy storytelling will keep you guessing until the very last page. Praise for Watch Me Disappear “Clever and compelling, this ricocheting tale reveals that, even in the closest families, how little we know of the ones we love, and how our own secrets are often the hardest to bear, can cost us dearly in the end.”—Lisa Gardner, author of Right Behind You “Tantalizing and twisty, Watch Me Disappear is both a spider’s web of a novel and a moving exploration of the deeper mysteries of marriage and family. You won’t be able to put it down, but you won’t forget it either.”—Megan Abbott, author of You Will Know Me “A riveting, seductive read about the secret, protected places within even the most intimate relationships . . . Janelle Brown has written a novel that provokes thought as her story twists and turns. I loved it.”—Sara Gruen, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Water for ElephantsWatch Me Disappear is at once a riveting page-turner and a thoughtful meditation on what it means to know other people—and ourselves.”—Edan Lepucki, New York Times bestselling author of California “I devoured Watch Me Disappear in one sitting. In this poignant and captivating story of a missing woman and the family she left behind, Brown deftly peels away the layers of a loving marriage to reveal a haunting mystery and a devastating truth: that no matter how much you love someone, you can never truly know them.”—Laura McHugh, author of The Weight of Blood “The real magic of Watch Me Disappear is Brown’s gift for evoking familial love in all its mad permutations—and the more intensely for the high stakes of what has been taken, and what is yet to be found. This is a story you simply don’t want to end—but then, lord, what an ending!”—Tim Johnston, author of Descent

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Summary

Summary

A July 2017 LibraryReads Pick

The disappearance of a beautiful, charismatic mother leaves her family to piece together her secrets in this propulsive novel for fans of Big Little Lies—from the bestselling author of All We Ever Wanted Was Everything.

“Tantalizing and twisty . . . a spider’s web of a novel . . . You won’t be able to put it down.”—Megan Abbott

Who you want people to be makes you blind to who they really are.

It’s been a year since Billie Flanagan—a Berkeley mom with an enviable life—went on a solo hike in Desolation Wilderness and vanished from the trail. Her body was never found, just a shattered cellphone and a solitary hiking boot. Her husband and teenage daughter have been coping with Billie’s death the best they can: Jonathan drinks as he works on a loving memoir about his marriage; Olive grows remote, from both her father and her friends at the all-girls school she attends.

But then Olive starts having strange visions of her mother, still alive. Jonathan worries about Olive’s emotional stability, until he starts unearthing secrets from Billie’s past that bring into question everything he thought he understood about his wife. Who was the woman he knew as Billie Flanagan?

Together, Olive and Jonathan embark on a quest for the truth—about Billie, but also about themselves, learning, in the process, about all the ways that love can distort what we choose to see. Janelle Brown’s insights into the dynamics of intimate relationships will make you question the stories you tell yourself about the people you love, while her nervy storytelling will keep you guessing until the very last page.

Praise for Watch Me Disappear

“Clever and compelling, this ricocheting tale reveals that, even in the closest families, how little we know of the ones we love, and how our own secrets are often the hardest to bear, can cost us dearly in the end.”—Lisa Gardner, author of Right Behind You

“Tantalizing and twisty, Watch Me Disappear is both a spider’s web of a novel and a moving exploration of the deeper mysteries of marriage and family. You won’t be able to put it down, but you won’t forget it either.”—Megan Abbott, author of You Will Know Me

“A riveting, seductive read about the secret, protected places within even the most intimate relationships . . . Janelle Brown has written a novel that provokes thought as her story twists and turns. I loved it.”—Sara Gruen, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Water for Elephants

Watch Me Disappear is at once a riveting page-turner and a thoughtful meditation on what it means to know other people—and ourselves.”—Edan Lepucki, New York Times bestselling author of California

“I devoured Watch Me Disappear in one sitting. In this poignant and captivating story of a missing woman and the family she left behind, Brown deftly peels away the layers of a loving marriage to reveal a haunting mystery and a devastating truth: that no matter how much you love someone, you can never truly know them.”—Laura McHugh, author of The Weight of Blood

“The real magic of Watch Me Disappear is Brown’s gift for evoking familial love in all its mad permutations—and the more intensely for the high stakes of what has been taken, and what is yet to be found. This is a story you simply don’t want to end—but then, lord, what an ending!”—Tim Johnston, author of Descent

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

I devoured Watch Me Disappear in one sitting. Brown deftly peels away the layers of a loving marriage to reveal a haunting mystery and a devastating truth: that no matter how much you love someone, you can never truly know them. Laura McHugh, author of The Weight of Blood
The plot is gripping enough: A woman’s disappearance leaves a daughter and husband in a limbo that moves rapidly into true mystery, with ever-widening gaps between acceptance and doubt, memory and history, truth and lies—all very slippery and treacherous and thrilling. But the real magic of Watch Me Disappear is Brown’s gift for evoking familial love in all its mad permutations—and the more intensely for the high stakes of what has been taken, and what is yet to be found. This is a story you simply don’t want to end—but then, lord, what an ending! Tim Johnston, author of Descent
Watch Me Disappear is at once a riveting page-turner and a thoughtful meditation on what it means to know other people—and ourselves. Be careful: Once you start Janelle Brown’s expertly crafted and wonderfully mysterious novel, you won’t be able to stop. Edan Lepucki, New York Times bestselling author of California
A riveting, seductive read about the secret, protected places within even the most intimate relationships . . . Janelle Brown has written a novel that provokes thought as her story twists and turns. I loved it. Sara Gruen, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Water for Elephants
Clever and compelling, this ricocheting tale reveals that, even in the closest families, how little we know of the ones we love, and how our own secrets are often the hardest to bear, can cost us dearly in the end. Lisa Gardner, author of Right Behind You
Tantalizing and twisty, Watch Me Disappear is both a spider’s web of a novel and a moving exploration of the deeper mysteries of marriage and family. You won’t be able to put it down, but you won’t forget it either. Megan Abbott, author of You Will Know Me
“With romantic subplots and surprise elements, including an unexpected finale, this evenly paced novel is multilayered enough to have wide appeal…The mystery behind Billie’s disappearance is subtle and intertwined with the idea of family and identity. Verdict: Readers interested in exploring the fissures in marriages and the arc of a character’s journey through a dramatic story will enjoy this.” Library Journal

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Janelle Brown

Janelle Brown is the author of This Is Where We Live and All We Ever Wanted Was Everything. She is also an essayist and journalist whose writing has appeared in Vogue, the New York Times, Elle, Wired, Self, Los Angeles Times, Salon, and numerous other publications.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD
Category: Fiction/Thrillers/Suspense
Runtime: 13.26
Audience: Adult
Language: English