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Forgotten Crimes

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A young woman is forced to face up to the truth of her past...

Gloria is heading to meet her friend Rhetty in a bar. Once close, the two friends have drifted apart. Rhetty is different now, a shadow of her former self, and it all goes back to an incident that occurred four years ago.

They meet at the same bar as always. It’s a sleazy venue. Gloria is uncomfortable there. She has a recollection of something terrible happening at the place, but can’t recall any details.

Rhetty is agitated. She tells Gloria something that can’t be true. That another acquaintance of theirs, a bolshie woman called Joanna, is back on the scene. It can’t be true because Joanna died four years ago.

What is Rhetty trying to achieve when she convinces Gloria to return to where Joanna died? And why is Gloria, despite her reservations, ready to go along with her? Why did Joanna die, and how is it possible she could return?

129 pages, Kindle Edition

First published February 20, 2018

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Anna Willett

21 books863 followers

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Community Reviews

5 stars
115 (24%)
4 stars
128 (27%)
3 stars
142 (30%)
2 stars
53 (11%)
1 star
28 (6%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 38 reviews
Profile Image for Kim.
2,037 reviews
February 22, 2021
Setting: Western Australia. This book comprised a novella (Forgotten Crimes) and a short story - in Forgotten Crimes, Gloria is summoned to a meeting by her lifelong friend who tells her that she has seen Joanna, a woman who they believed had been dead for four years. Gloria is persuaded to return to the scene of the 'crime', her family's beach house. On arrival there, she gets a shock... The story jumps back and forth between 2001 and 2005 as we learn what happened between the three women..
The short story is a prequel to Backwoods Ripper, which I have already read, and is about the two women living in an isolated former hospital in the WA outback...
I found Forgotten Crimes, despite its brevity, to be quite a good story with a quite unexpected twist; having read Backwoods Ripper, I sort of knew what was going to happen in that one - but overall a good quick read - 8/10.
Profile Image for Wiseask.
132 reviews12 followers
January 24, 2020
I had read for free Anna Willet’s barely average Retribution Ridge (2016) and below-average Unwelcome Guests (2018) before slogging through her Forgotten Crimes (2018). Clearly, unlike fine wine, this author is not improving with age.

At 127 pages in its entirety, Forgotten Crimes is simply a long short story, which like her two other books is set in western Australia. Ms. Willet audaciously describes her story as a “gripping psychological suspense thriller,” though it’s none of the above.

Instead, Forgotten Crimes is the product of a writer who’s run out of gas, or ideas, or both. Ms. Willet rewards her readers with sentences like: “Her heart hammered her chest; thwunck, thwunck, thwunck.” I had never believed that letters could be combined to form a word “thwunk” until Ms. Willett showed it was possible.

The story alternates the narrative between chapters, describing events four years apart. Gloria and her friend Rhetty return to Gloria’s summer house after Rhetty had just reported seeing Joanna. Ordinarily seeing Joanna would not have been noteworthy, except that Joanna had died in that house four years before.

Intrigued? Don’t be. As soon as the author reveals that Gloria has been under psychiatric care but hasn’t been taking her medication, you can pretty much write the ending yourself.
Profile Image for Bandit.
4,461 reviews445 followers
September 11, 2018
This was my second read by the author. And not just for an armchair visit to Australia, but because she writes these thrillers that are fast paced, entertaining and tend to come up as freebies now and again. Forgotten Crimes is a title to be taken quite literary as it features an unreliable narrator with memory glitches. Psychological quirks like that may have an adverse effect on a friendship, but then again so would jealousy or a new person introduced into the mix, which is precisely how it all plays out between two old friends one night after heavy partying. And then four years later the protagonist finds herself haunted by the events of that crazy night and has to sort out what is and isn’t real once and for all. Pretty straight forward story with a split narrative and thriller dynamics, featuring the prerequisite murder, suspense and a twist ending. All packaged into a very brief page count, which takes up only 72% of the already slim volume, the rest is a preview. Quick and easy fun, particularly for a freebie. Might cause to give a second consideration to a private pool. Or not, cause really private pools…what luxury.
Profile Image for Mcf1nder_sk.
595 reviews17 followers
August 28, 2018
This was a nicely crafted taut story. Gloria's inability to remember events of her past, told through two timelines four years apart, was smoothly written and, unlike many other books I've read, was easy to follow. The twists in the tale are sure to keep the reader in suspense.
Profile Image for Jean.
47 reviews7 followers
June 25, 2019

This book has your mind and your heart racing on multiple instances. Everytime you think I know what's happening and how it's all going to end, you are shaken out of that with a shocking revelation. The novel has two timelines going back and forth and usually only one timeline tends to keep you interested but this one has you wanting to know about both the timelines at once which is absolutely amazing.The end is executed in a precise and classy way so out of the predictive thrillers. Reminded me of Minette Walters novels. Forgotten Crimes is not a story you are going to forget in a hurry. You will just not be able to read it in portions, it's a one time all night reading kinda book. I wish there weren't the typos. And its a 4.8 for me.
Profile Image for Tina.
878 reviews6 followers
July 12, 2021

Rhetty has several terrible secrets. Rhetty asks Gloria, who she used to be extremely close to as a friend, best friends. To meet up with her. Gloria hasn't seen or spoken to her former best friend in four years. Not since that terrible night. Gloria can't remember what happened on that night though. All she knows is that something terrible happened and she's not sure she wants to ever remember.

Ok the twist I thought was coming was only half right so am happy with that. The other half I was genuinely like wtf? I enjoyed this book. It takes place in two different years. 2011 and 2015. Each chapter is clearly marked in what year you are reading in so it's not confusing at all. It's a quick read by only 2 hours, depending on how quick a reader you are.
Profile Image for Erik Empson.
382 reviews12 followers
February 24, 2018
This is one of those books that makes you think you know what will happen but then lands you with a jaw-dropping surprise at the end. At times very creepy, always full of nail-biting suspense, this is an example of what Willett does best: creating claustrophobic situations in which women have difficult choices to make. Set in the South West of Australia this is Willett's fourth novel.
359 reviews
August 25, 2020

I chose this rating because this book is great. If you get the chance to read it you should you won't be disappointed.
Profile Image for Cindylou.
122 reviews1 follower
August 5, 2020
Forgotten Crimes

Good read. Definitely creepy when it comes back around. Kind of makes you wonder about some different places and some different people.
May 9, 2018
GREAT READ! You are a really good writer!

I can't wait for your next book. Anybody who likes psychological books will LOVE Anna Willet's books! Her books are some of the best I have read this year and I read a lot!
Profile Image for Donna Bell.
89 reviews1 follower
July 22, 2018
Very good read!

I think I’ve read all Anna Willett’s books now, and enjoyed each and every one. Looking forward to more by this author...hope she has a new one for us soon.
485 reviews
September 2, 2018
This is a harrowing story. It contains triggers for victims of sexual assault, deaths of parents, car accidents and murder. I always enjoy psychological thrillers. Rated R
172 reviews
February 18, 2019

A truly unique story you will want to finish in one sitting. So well woven I never saw the ending coming.
332 reviews1 follower
February 21, 2019
A Disturbing thrillet

This book was hard to put down. The characters were likeable and the plot kept skipping from 2011 to 2015. The ending was rather shocking!
601 reviews1 follower
September 1, 2018
This book was in fact two short stories. Stories of murder. The first one the woman, Gloria, kilos two people and bury them under the swimming pool that is being dug. She then moved to the US from Australia.
The second story was also short and sweet, with a guy on his way to Melbourne to sign a contract with a company that will make him famous needs a lift. Takes one with weird ladies, and end up dead after one of the ladies treats him for appendicitis and a tracheotomy and does not quite make it right. The story ends when the sisters are in the process of grabbing him by the legs and torso and readying him for burial. It was not what I expected, I was surprised but sort of pleasantly so. Quick read.
Profile Image for Vivian.
794 reviews10 followers
October 4, 2019
Slow to build, unlike other Willett books, but once it got going, it didn’t stop.

Gloria has know. Rhetty just about her whole life. They were different; upbringings, style and personality. So many years of friendship meant they knew each other well. Joanna was new to the group. Gloria never liked how she pretty much claimed Rhetty as her own. Almost pushing Gloria to the side, feeling Gloria thought too good for them, which was farthest from the truth.

One night at the club, after Gloria scored some pills from Joanna, everything changed. Things went all sorts of wrong. Now four years later, the nightmare is back.
469 reviews1 follower
November 20, 2018
Not believable

I'm sorry but this book just didn't work for me. I really couldn't care about the characters and I found what happened totally unbelievable. I'm expected to believe that the kind girl described on Gloria's first day at a new school, turned out to be a psycho who would deliberately set her up to be raped and then try to murder her with a knife. I found myself incredulous. Glad it was a short book.
9 reviews
May 22, 2018
An average book

I have read other books previously by Anna willett and they have been endearing, interesting and a brilliant read. However, I felt that this book had a good lead up but a disappointing ending.
Profile Image for Barbara.
1,114 reviews9 followers
September 2, 2018

This is the first story I’ve ever read by this author. It was okay, but I didn’t really find it intriguing or suspenseful and had figured some things out before they were revealed in the story.
Profile Image for Ted Tayler.
Author 54 books246 followers
May 14, 2019

The constant flipping from past to present became tedious after a while. This book needed really strong characters to carry what was in essence a very simple premise and sadly, it didn't. As a result, it was a quick read and on to the next one.
69 reviews
July 7, 2022
No good resolution

Surprising whodunit story but no real suspense or character development. This story was too short and while its a great plot, it just wasn't delivered well. It feels more like a draft than a finished story. It has a great premise though
79 reviews1 follower
September 1, 2018
The cover says "gripping psychological thriller". I don't know about that but it was a very quick read. I got a little confused with the time changing, then it ended. Odd, but enjoyable.
Profile Image for Lesa Tobiason beach.
103 reviews1 follower
September 5, 2018
What happened?

There wasn't a lot to this story. It was missing some things, needed fleshing out. Overall,not a bad story, but incomplete.
163 reviews
November 10, 2018

I did not like the bouncing back and forth in the storyline. The ending was not satisfying to me. It was a quick read but not an author i would follow.
337 reviews2 followers
September 18, 2019

This started off as quite a griping story but soon descended into a complete load of rubbish.
Thankfully it is quite short.
461 reviews
September 30, 2019
Interesting read, but not as good as some of her other efforts. I particularly thought it ended before it was really done.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 38 reviews

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