Shelleyrae at Book'd Out's Reviews > Scared Yet?

Scared Yet? by Jaye Ford
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Feb 22, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: aussie-author
Read from March 02 to 03, 2012 — I own a copy

Jaye Ford's newest release Scared Yet? came highly recommended on the heels of her successful debut, Beyond Fear. In this psychological thriller, Ford introduces her protagonist Livia Prescott, who is the victim of a terrifying assault. Though she is able to successfully thwart her attacker, who disappears in to the night, shortly afterward she becomes the focus of a disturbing and sustained campaign of harassment. When the man who assaulted her is captured, Liv is stunned that the harassment doesn't stop, in fact, the anonymous threats escalate and the unknown stalker begins to target her friends and loved ones. Liv is scared but with everyone she knows a suspect, who can she trust and what will happen when she trusts the wrong person?

Ford has created an admirable character in Liv who readers are immediately able to relate to. It has not been a good year for Liv, her once strong and stalwart father is dying, she is embroiled in a bitter relationship with her ex-husband and the business she owns with best friend Kelly, is teetering on the brink of collapse. Yet Liv doesn't give in when she is attacked in the carpark after a long day at work, she fights back, making use of her pent up anger and frustration, and the boxing skills learnt from her father. The description of the attack is harrowing, for most women the possibility of an attack lurks in the back of your mind when you cross a deserted car park and it is all too easy to imagine yourself in a similar situation. You can't help but cheer Liv on as she blackens the attackers eye and then draw in a pained breath as he slams her head into the car boot. In the aftermath of the assault, Liv relies on her anger to hold the fear at bay, declaring she wasn't scared in a media interview, until the notes begin arriving, delivered to her work, placed under the windshield of her car and even hand delivered to her son. Liv responds practically to the implied threat, informing the police and making her home more secure which is a relief, since all too often authors rely on their protagonists making inane choices to put them in even more danger. Despite Liv's precautions her stalker is determined to breach her defenses by targeting her friends, continually taunting her with notes asking "Are you scared yet, Liv?"
Of the secondary characters, I am wary of saying anything much for fear of accidentally revealing who is, and who isn't, a viable suspect. I did feel that Ford did a credible job in fleshing out the supporting cast, while ensuring they retained the necessary ambiguity. The only real flaw for me in the story was the behaviour of Jason, I just didn't think his behaviour fit with what we are told about him and his history with Liv. It's a difficult point to articulate without a a spoiler but had there been some sort of past related incident, his actions would have made more sense to me.

The careful plotting ensured I was kept guessing, though when the identity of the stalker was revealed I wondered why I hadn't seen it. It's to the author's credit that I was suspicious of almost everyone at one point or another.
Ford builds the tension masterfully as the situation escalates and the pool of suspects widens. The final confrontation between Liv and her stalker is explosive and the conclusion is satisfying.

Scared Yet? is a taut thriller that places an ordinary woman in extraordinary circumstances. I turned the pages compulsively and read the entire book in a little more than three hours (despite it being 454 pages long and 2am when I finished). My copy of the book is adorned with a money-back guarantee sticker from the publisher but I would be shocked if anyone made use of it. Scared Yet? is just what it promises, a stellar read - a fast-paced, entertaining and engrossing novel of suspense.
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Brenda Fantastic review Shelleyrae! I can't wait to read my copy:)

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