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When I Was You

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  28,868 ratings  ·  2,131 reviews
A stolen identity leads a woman down a dark and desperate path in a gripping novel of psychological suspense by Wall Street Journal bestselling author Minka Kent.

After barely surviving a brutal attack, Brienne Dougray rarely leaves her house. Suffering from debilitating headaches and memory loss, she can rely only on her compassionate new tenant, Dr. Niall Emberlin, a welc
Paperback, 288 pages
Published February 1st 2020 by Thomas & Mercer
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Popular Answered Questions
Sammye Well, I'm not sure about Lesa's answer above. I'm a seasoned thriller fan and I thought I knew what was going on twenty pages in, WRONG. Then 60 pages…moreWell, I'm not sure about Lesa's answer above. I'm a seasoned thriller fan and I thought I knew what was going on twenty pages in, WRONG. Then 60 pages later I was SURE I knew what was going on. WRONG AGAIN! The really fun thing about this book is that you are constantly thinking you know and then, you are wrong!

80% of all the books I read fall totally apart 90% of the way through. As if the author got tired of writing the story and gave it to someone to finish who has no imagination! THIS ONE DIDN'T! I really liked it for that! Thank you Ms. Kent! For keeping me guessing and keeping the story fresh until the end.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Jessica This was my question too. The part of Niall showing up and ushering 'Kate' out doesn't make sense in the way it is written if Sam isn't in on it, but …moreThis was my question too. The part of Niall showing up and ushering 'Kate' out doesn't make sense in the way it is written if Sam isn't in on it, but I believe it was more of an oversight by the author/editor than an indication that Sam was in on it. (less)

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Average rating 3.89  · 
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Nilufer Ozmekik
Feb 01, 2020 rated it liked it
Another fast paced, not so surprising, twisty but hmm it’s okay, let’s meet in the middle and plan another vacation to Switzerland book. The big twist was caught too early (actually at the beginning by my real spider senses – they’re stronger than Peter Parker’s, trust me!-) too predictable because everyone was acting way too much suspicious. (All those thriller lovers might have sensed easily because they got practiced with real mind bending, WTH I just read kind of rug just pulled out from you ...more
Jan 01, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
This is a light thriller. The first part, which is Part 1 for Brienne, moved slower than the rest of the novel. This first part last from 1%-41% (on a Kindle) and caused the beginning to drag. It's her repeating constantly how she is scared and how she wants to confront the person who took her identity but never acts upon it...other than that she only talks about how she thinks her roommate is cute. So, that made it repetitive and draining. Also, there were several obvious clues dropped during t ...more
Feb 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, kindle-first
'All I want is an answer. An explanation. And for this to end. I don't even need an apology despite the fact that it's beyond reprehensible to inflict mental trauma on someone who has already been victimized.'

3.5 stars rounded to 4

The best advice I can give you about When I Was You is this...despite the incredibly slow pacing at the beginning, keep reading. Once you hit the 40% mark, the novel kicks into gear and the action is fast-paced and fun.

Told from dual perspectives, those of Brienne
Feb 01, 2020 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: people who can suspend disbelief
Thank you to NetGalley and Thomas & Mercer for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

DNF ~40%.

Sometimes you can tell right from the beginning that a book just isn’t for you. This was one of those times.

When I Was You stars Brienne Dougray, a thirty-year-old single woman living with PTSD after she was violently attacked. I’ve read plenty of other mysteries and thrillers that feature a female protagonist who is struggling to hold her life together after a traumatic event: Littl
Feb 21, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: z2020-02, x-3-star

Rating: 3.0/5.0


This is the story of a stolen identity. Brienne Dougray is a survivor of a brutal attack. She suffers from headaches and memory loss due to that. Dr. Niall Emberlin becomes her new tenant and offers her the compassion she needs in her life but disturbing things start to happen and she finds there is an imposter who is trying to steal her whole life from her.

To me When I Was You is just an OK thriller. I can't say I enjoyed reading all its parts. The chapters are shor
Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
I read a ton of pre-release books, and when I get them gratis or at low cost from publishers, I figure I owe it to my benefactors to finish them no matter what. And if I've learned one thing over many years and many more books, it's that I'm right to not be too hasty to call it quits.

Such is the case with this book, which I got through Amazon's First Reads program. Somewhere around the 10% mark, I was ready to call it a day. The main character, Brienne Dougray, depicts the kind of woman who, for
Brienne was brutally attacked months ago, and now rarely leaves home. She has taken on a tenant, Niall, so that she is not alone. When Brienne learns someone has stolen her identity and is living as her, Brienne has to get out of her comfort zone.

Told with the alternating points of view of Brienne and Niall. Brienne is not the most reliable narrator, since she recently survived a brutal attack. Niall is kind and provides Brienne with the support she needs. Of course, nothing is ever quite as it
Christina McDonald
I loved this twisty, topsy, turvy thriller! No, this is not a literary thriller, it's a book that's meant to entertain. It's interesting and addictive and just pure fun.

When I Was You follows Brienne Dougray, who's recently suffered a harrowing attack that nearly cost her her life. Now she's living in near seclusion, afraid of the outside world, with only her roommate, Niall, for company. But are things as they appear? Of course not. Otherwise there would be no book to read!

I particularly loved
Debbie "DJ"
This one started off okay, and really had me going about half way to three quarters of the way through. But, oh no, the ending! It’s almost as if the author forgot this was a thriller, and switched to the hallmark channel. Very sappy, and honestly quite boring.
Feb 09, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3 Stars

This 3 Star Thriller had some very definite 4 Star qualities but overall, I found the premise unbelievable.

Brienne is feeling pretty vulnerable after a violent, traumatic attack. She is barely able to leave her house and suffers from debilitating migraines, memory loss and anxiety. She lives in the giant Victorian house where she was raised by her grandparents and has recently taken in a roommate (a handsome doctor) because she was feeling too alone. In addition to her issues from
Cassie-Traveling Sister-
Dec 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What did I just read??? Oh my gosh this book had me at the edge of my seat. I didn’t know who to trust or believe! Brienne Dougray was attacked while leaving work barely surviving her attack she’s now afraid to leave her home or talk to anyone. She decides to rent out a room upstairs in her home to the handsome Dr Niall Emberlin. She soon finds herself relying on him and his friendship as she heals from emotional and physical wounds. When she receives a key in the mail for an apartment she suppo ...more
Jan 14, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Murph by: Amazon First Reads
I got this book through Amazon First Reads, which I had never tried before. I’ve also never read Minka Kent’s work, and I was less than... thrilled. I think this was meant to be in the Gone Girl style of mind fuckery, but the holes in the plotting were the size of the Grand Canyon, it was wildly unbelievable, and once the twists are revealed, it loses a lot of it's intrigue. Besides the brief synopsis, I'm hiding everything below behind a spoiler wall, because I don't want to ruin anything for a ...more
Ankit Garg
Mar 04, 2020 rated it liked it
"When I Was You" is the perfect example of a fast-paced novel. Even with a slow start, the story catches up fast. The flawless execution of a not-so-unique plot is worth giving this book a chance.

The surprises didn't really catch me off-guard, most (if not all) of the times I knew what was coming next. In the first half, the antagonist is portrayed as a too-good-to-be-true human. That was enough to give the plot away. Maybe the author should consider this point for her next mystery thriller.

“It never fails to amaze me all the things people do when they think no one’s watching, the things they think they can get away with.”
― Minka Kent, When I Was You

"Go to the police, go to the police, go to the police."


So I was a bit let down by this book although I didn't hate it. In terms of WHY I was let down, my GR friends Dita and Paige say it best. The book was a bit DRAINING. I skipped much of part one because, as has been said, all it really is, is the main character ruminating over h
Jennifer Kyle
Feb 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
Mary  Carrasco
Jan 12, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brienne has a good life until one day after leaving work, she is attacked. Her belongings were stolen and she was left with a traumatic brain injury. She lives in a large house that her grandparents bequeathed to her but in light of her recent trauma, she doesn't want to live there alone. She takes on a tenant. Her recovery is slow and soon strange things begin happening.

I've enjoyed a good handful of Minka Kent's novels and this was no exception. I practically read it straight through! The plo
Jan 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: physical-arcs
I’ve read all of Minka Kent’s books and good lord does the woman know how to write a super twisty and unputdownable thriller! Her books always suck me in immediately, she doesn’t waste time with a whole bunch of buildup, she jumps right into the action from the start and I was hooked on this one after the first chapter. Her books remind me a little of Tarryn Fisher’s, there’s always a hint of bat shit crazy and I’m about that life 🤣 Not a lot for me to discuss plot wise because spoilers, but if ...more
Darcia Helle
This book tries to be something much more sinister than straightforward identity theft, but the abundant plot holes and implausibility ruined it for me.

The writing itself is engaging. I was initially intrigued by the situation, and I wanted to know more about Brienne. But we really don't learn much about her at all, aside from what's necessary for the plot.

The major twist is like a train coming at you with its horn wailing. It's easy to see coming from early on.

Pacing is slow for the first third
Miriam Reynoso
Feb 06, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: next
I just finished When I was You and all I can say is that it didn’t live up to my expectations. Brienne Dougra is a survivor of a vicious attack who believes that she is the victim of stolen identity. She is determined to discover who is behind it. Ok so far !! But a few questions, why wouldn’t Brienne just call the police? What about that weird relationship with her roommate? ( you are rich, but you need a roommate😒)? Also, You have over 13 millions in the bank, but you are hesitant about instal ...more
Jan 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Kent’s new thriller is gripping from the very first chapter, as Brienne – who tells the story in the first person – recounts the story of her trauma in painful detail. In the audiobook version, narrator Erin deWard successfully captures Brienne’s vulnerability and paranoia without ever becoming whiny.

The vulnerability earned in those early pages creates significant narrative momentum that will propel many readers to finish the book – which weighs in at an economical 282 pages – in just one or tw
Predictable but very fast-paced! I did see the plot twist from a mile away but I still found it to be enjoyable!

The pacing was a bit of a problem for me. Part I dragged on for quite a bit because nothing really happens.
However, Parts II and III made up for the slow-moving plot and were very fast-paced and gripping. I kept turning the pages and before you know it, I was finished with the book!

In terms of the plot, there were a lot of plot holes and missing pieces. I was left with more questions
Jan 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
"𝐼𝒻 𝐼'𝓂 𝑔𝑜𝒾𝓃𝑔 𝓉𝑜 𝒻𝒾𝓃𝒹 𝓉𝒽𝒾𝓈 "𝑜𝓉𝒽𝑒𝓇 𝓂𝑒," 𝒾𝒻 𝐼'𝓂 𝑔𝑜𝒾𝓃𝑔 𝓉𝑜 𝓉𝒶𝓀𝑒 𝒷𝒶𝒸𝓀 𝓌𝒽𝒶𝓉'𝓈 𝓇𝒾𝑔𝒽𝓉𝒻𝓊𝓁𝓁𝓎 𝓂𝒾𝓃𝑒, 𝐼 𝓃𝑒𝑒𝒹 𝓉𝑜 𝒽𝒶𝓋𝑒 𝒶 𝒸𝓁𝑒𝒶𝓇 𝒽𝑒𝒶𝒹. 𝐼 𝓃𝑒𝑒𝒹 𝓉𝑜 𝒷𝑒 𝒸𝒶𝓁𝓂. 𝐼 𝓃𝑒𝑒𝒹 𝓉𝑜 𝓃𝑜𝓉 𝑜𝓋𝑒𝓇𝓇𝑒𝒶𝒸𝓉."

This book was nothing like I read before. The premise is simple, a woman got brutally attacked resulting in some memory loss but with each turn of the page, things get more and more mysterious. Characters are well developed and these people are not always what they seem. The most compelling part for me was the way the story was to
Lauren Spaduzzi
Jan 18, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Deborah Rogers
Three and a half stars. When I Was You is a breezy, easy afternoon read. Not really dark enough to be called a psychological thriller, however the story was well written with interesting characters. The plot was a little simplistic for my usual tastes but an enjoyable read nonetheless.
Mar 10, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley-ebooks
4.5/ 5 stars

When I Was You is a psychological suspense thriller. This is my fifth book by this author. I have previously read: The Thinnest Air, The Memory Watcher, The Stillwater Girls, and The Perfect Roommate.

This book is divided into three parts. There are two narrators (1st person POVs). The first narrator is Brienne (30 years old).

Brienne was attacked a few months before the book begins. And she now gets migraines and is scared to leave her home. She has a tenant, a doctor named Niall, who
Ana Stanciu-Dumitrache
Destul de slab si prost construit, desi are o intriga interesanta ...
This was my January pick for the Amazon Prime first reads and it was an enjoyable book that moved along with good pace and seemed to break some of the 'rules' of suspense by revealing the 'why' of the manipulation before the book was half done. It's much more typical to have to hang on right to the end to figure out why baddies are baddies and why they're up to no good.

The start is rather abrupt and we're presented with a back story of why Brienne finds herself lonely and friendless after an at
Erin Clemence
Feb 11, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle, first-reads
3.5 rounded up to 4

Special thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for a free, electronic ARC of “When I Was You” by Minka Kelly, received in exchange for an honest review.

After a harrowing attack that nearly cost Brienne Dougray her life, she is now living in near seclusion, with only her grandparents’ sprawling estate and her roommate, Niall, for company. One day, Brienne comes across unsettling information; a woman who looks very much like her is living in an apartment under her name, drivin
♛ Garima ♛
Well, that was clever!

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