Review: Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner

Title: Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner
Quincy & Rainie Series Book Seven
Publisher: Dutton
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 400 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Penguin’s First to Read Program


Lisa Gardner’s next thriller following her runaway New York Times bestseller Find Her takes her wildly popular brand of suspense to new heights.

Is he a hero?

Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash’s older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.

Is he a killer?

Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah’s older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun.

All she knows for sure: He’s back.

As the clock winds down on a massive hunt for Telly, Quincy and Rainie must answer two critical questions: Why after eight years has this young man started killing again? And what does this mean for Sharlah? Once upon a time, Sharlah’s big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killer? And how much will it cost her new family before they learn the final, shattering truth? Because as Sharlah knows all too well, the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.


Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner is an enthralling mystery about a police hunt for a suspected spree killer. Although this latest release is the seventh installment in the Quincy & Rainie series, it can be read as a standalone.

Following the discovery of two murder victims at a local convenience store/gas station, Sheriff Shelly Atkins calls on retired FBI Profiler Pierce Quincy to help put together a profile of the suspected killer.  Quincy is stunned to learn the identity of the suspect is his soon to adopted foster daughter Sharlah’s seventeen year old brother Telly Ray Nash.  After learning that Telly’s foster parents, Frank and Sandra Duvall, have also been murdered,  Quincy fears Sharlah might become his next victim.  With a massive manhunt for  Telly underway, Quincy, Rainie and Sheriff Atkins try to piece together a possible motive  for Telly’s apparent rampage.  Why would Telly want to murder his foster parents?  What reason could he have for gunning down two apparent strangers?  And the biggest question of all: can they capture Telly before he harms Sharlah?

Eight years earlier, Telly killed his drunk and abusive father during a violent attack in which both Telly and Sharlah feared for their lives.  With their mother also dead, Telly and Sharlah became wards of the state and they were sent to live with different foster families.  Now, after bouncing from one bad home to another, both Sharlah and Telly are living with good families who care about them.  Although she has been unable to verbalize her feelings, Sharlah is happy that Quincy and Rainie are adopting her. Meanwhile, Telly is less than a year away from aging out of the foster system but Frank and Sandra are making progress in preparing him for this next stage of his life. So everyone wants to know: what precipitated Telly’s suspected killing spree?  And after discovering evidence that he has apparently been stalking Sharlah, what does he plan to do to his sister?  There are no clear cut answers to any of the investigators’ questions and they are frantic to capture Telly before he kills again.

Initially, Sheriff Atkins and Quincy’s suspect that Telly’s killing spree has something to do with his and Sharlah’s past.  However, the deeper they dig into Telly’s life with the Duvall’s the less certain they are that his troubled childhood has anything to do with  the current crimes.  A few incongruous details turn the investigation in a completely new direction but Telly remains the focus of their investigation.  As the manhunt for Telly continues, will newly discovered information prove he is innocent?

With fiendishly clever twists and turns,  Right Behind You is a spellbinding police procedural that fans of the genre are going to absolutely LOVE.  The storyline is intriguing with plenty of suspense as the chapters alternate between different perspectives including enlightening chapters from both Telly and Sharlah’s points of view.  The investigation moves at a fever pitch as Sheriff Atkins and Quincy feverishly follow every new lead while at the same time, the manhunt for Telly adds increased urgency to the storyline.  Lisa Gardner brings the novel to a very dramatic and quite shocking conclusion with a plot twist that is impossible to predict. An absolutely outstanding mystery that I highly recommend to old and new fans of  the Quincy & Rainie series.

1 Comment

Filed under Contemporary, Dutton, Lisa Jackson, Mystery, Quincy & Rainie Series, Rated B+, Review, Right Behind You, Suspense

One Response to Review: Right Behind You by Lisa Gardner

  1. Timitra

    Sounds good. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Kathy