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Mother May I

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  1,721 ratings  ·  804 reviews
Revenge doesn’t wait for permission.

Growing up poor in rural Georgia, Bree Cabbat was warned by her single mother that the world was a dark and scary place. Bree rejected her mother’s fearful outlook, and life has proved her right. Having married into a family with wealth, power, and connections, Bree now has all a woman could ever dream of: a loving lawyer husband, two ta
Published April 6th 2021 by Harper Audio
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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,721 ratings  ·  804 reviews

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Apr 01, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson (narrated by author)

I was captivated by this story and by the author's narration of the story. Here's an author who knows exactly what tone of voice she wants for each character and she is able to provide that with her own voice. Not all authors are good at narrating their own work but I enjoyed how much this author's narration adds to this story. 

I was captivated by this privileged life of Bree and her family. Bree came from a poor upbringing, hearing her mother
Dorie  - Cats&Books :)

I remember playing the game “Mother May I” on the playground as a kid, we didn’t have as much fancy play equipment back then. It was a fun game with a group of kids, along the lines of “Simon Says”.

There is nothing fun about the “game” that is being played in this book. It is terrifying and the thing that nightmares are made of for any mother. The idea that you turn away for a minute and your child is “gone” !!! That is what happens to our main character Bree and how she play
Holly  B
This book has a lot of fast-paced action! And I was onboard for it!!

I was hooked on this book after only 2 chapters with the heart-pounding scenes (unlike many of the books I've read this year with slow starts). It took off, kept me on the edge and was quite the nail-biter!!

This was a solid read for me with memorable characters that I either loved or wanted to understand. A loving mother of three, a successful husband, someone with a secret crush, and that creepy, creepy lady!! Wait until yo
Jan 26, 2021 rated it really liked it
Mother May I was the first book I have read by author Joshilyn Jackson but it will not be my last. It was a well written suspenseful mystery thriller that captured my interest from the very start. There were many twists throughout the book. It grabbed me from the beginning and held my attention and curiosity until the conclusion. Joshilyn Jackson was very successful in building the level of suspense and consequences that occurred throughout Mother May I. I listened to the audiobook that was read ...more
Jessica | JustReadingJess
Mother May I grabbed my attention from the beginning. This is a great thriller that I highly recommend. Bree would do anything for her family especially after an unknown woman took her son. Bree ends up doing things she would never usually do. Bree is given directions that will cause her to lose her son or someone else. Bree is struggling with what to tell her husband. Bree turns to Marshall, an old friend, for help. Marshall is a genuinely good person. He is an ex-cop so has useful skills to he ...more
Jan 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, favorites
Wow! This was my first Joshilyn Jackson book and I can’t wait to read every other one by her.

This book is a five star reading experience that should not be missed.

The cover is beautiful and catchy that made me want to read before I even knew the story.

I read this as an audiobook read by the author. This was the best audio experience I have ever had. Joshilyn Jackson is someone I now want to read all my future books to me! She was remarkable.

The story follows Bree who has her toddler Robert kidna
Nilufer Ozmekik
Apr 12, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Can you imagine a scary witch extends her long nails to grab your kid a few feet away as you watch your teenage daughter’s Grease rehearsal and leaves you note that says not to call the authorities and your husband, go directly to your home and wait for her instructions to see her little baby boy alive?

Did you get excited about the premise? I truly hooked and couldn’t put it down, let myself enjoy this wild, intriguing, complex ride!

Bree Cabbat in her late thirties, finally has it all: wealt
Andrew Smith
Review originally published on

Bree Cabbat grew up with a cash strapped and anxious mother obsessed with protecting her own security and that of her daughter. Bree had never met her father, who by all accounts was a piece of work, but as a gifted performer in amateur theatre she hoped that this might provide a gateway to the future life she dreamed of. But one day she met a man from a rich family and the mutual attraction was immediate. What followed was marriage, children
Tamar...light at the end of the tunnel?
If I was a book club member, I would suggest Mother May I for the club. The book blew me away. There are so many serious issues that can be discussed - women's place in society and the workplace, friendship, how some can move on after their misdeeds while others get only one shot at the brass ring, misogyny, one tiny step over the precipice/the cost of making a mistake/poor judgement, carrying the burden of a mistake, "discounting" bad behavior/salving the conscience/rewriting history, hones ...more
Dec 02, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
And here I am to be the dissenter amongst the throngs of 4 and 5 star early reviews for this one. I thought up until the last quarter of the book that it was going to be an "all the stars" review for me as well, but then the climax and ending were so disappointing that it brought it down to the 3.5 star mark.

The first half of the book is fabulous - Bree Cabbat has everything a woman could ever dream of - a loving attorney husband, two talented teenage daughters, a new baby boy, a gorgeous home,
Donna Davis
Joshilyn Jackson is one of my favorite authors, and so I was delighted to see that she has another novel coming out this spring. My heartfelt thanks go to Net Galley, Harper Audio, and William Morrow for the review copies. This book is for sale now.

One of the things I love about Jackson is that she recognizes and includes social class as a large factor in the lives of her characters. I am initially sorry to see that her protagonist, Bree Cabbat, is married to a wealthy man, but once the story u
4.5 stars
There will always be the haves and the have-nots. But what happens when a have-not marries a one-percenter? Down deep, who do they identify with?

Bree grew up poor, but marries Trey, a successful lawyer, and the marriage is a good one. They have two teen-age daughters and a new baby son, Robert. But their idyllic life comes to an end when Robert is kidnapped while Bree is momentarily distracted at her daughter’s play rehearsal. The terror Bree feels is palpable. Her mother warned her t
Feb 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Both terrifying and thoughtful, this is the excellent kidnapping book I’d hoped “The Chain” would be. In fact, this is very best “missing child” book I’ve read all year. A standout in a crowded field.

I listened to the audiobook, which was narrated very compellingly by the author. It’s rare when an author can narrate a book as well as a professional actor, but sometimes when they can, they add so much more to the feeling of the story, because only they truly knew what they were trying to convey.
A story of revenge! Imagine you think your going crazy! you're a new mom, short on sleep, you keep seeing someone following you, spying in your windows. You must just be paranoid! Then when you're at a school function for your older daughter, baby in a carrier next to you. You turn for just a second, and the baby is gone!! 😳 Well that's what happens to Bree! The lady who stole her baby makes contact with her, and Bree now has to do EXACTLY as the woman says to get her baby back alive! This is a ...more
A gripping and thought provoking domestic suspense about motherhood, family, privilege and revenge!

Imagine you wake up and see a witch looking in your bedroom window, it was just your imagination right?! A bad dream?! What if you saw her again, and then your baby went missing... This is what happened to Bree Cabbat! Who is the woman? What does she want? And what will Bree do to get him back?

This was my second book by Joshilyn Jackson, and I enjoyed them both!

Mother May I did start out a bit slow
Mandy White (mandylovestoread)
Mother May I is a psychological thriller that will shock you. After reading and loving Never Have I Ever I knew that this would be a wild one and I wasn’t disappointed. It is dark and unsettling but at the same time addictive and exciting.

What would you do for your child? That is the question that Bree must ask herself when her child is kidnapped. She is given strict instructions on what must happen in order to see her son again. She must do whatever it takes and she does. And I felt it could g
Jan 21, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received a free copy of this audiobook from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

TW: sexual assault/rape, death/murder, child abduction

Yeah. As you can see above, this is a HEAVY book. Much heavier than I expected, considering my first introduction to Jackson was The Almost Sisters and it was much more tame than this.

All that considered, this was still a good, intriguing, compelling mystery/thriller. The characters were developed well and I felt connected to each of them, whether it was
Jan 10, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways
First off I won this as a goodreads giveaway. Thank you William Morrow for the book.

I stayed up to the wee hours of the morning to finish this one. It was that good and I had no idea what direction this story was going to take. So don’t cheat with this one.

As mentioned on the cover it is a story of revenge, but who’s revenge. Ponder that question while reading.

Get a copy of this as soon as it drops.
Cortney LaScola - The Bookworm Myrtle Beach
I read this book in a little over a day because I couldn't wait to see what happened next.

It did feel a little repetitive at times, but I enjoyed it! Not quite as much as her thriller from last year, Never Have I Ever, but there is no doubt that Joshilyn Jackson is talented and switched over from her original genre of books really well.

Can't wait to see what she comes up with next!
Bree Cabbat is the wife of a wealthy lawyer with a privileged background. She has a comfortable life as a stay at home mother with two young teenage daughters and a ten week old baby Robert. The family can afford a big house and private schools for the girls, but Bree has never forgotten that she grew up as the impoverished child of a single mother. A love for acting led her to study drama at college and to eventually adopt the more confident persona that enabled her to meet and marry her husban ...more
Melissa (LifeFullyBooked)
This is an excellent novel with a gripping storyline that will keep you turning pages late into the night. Ask my husband how late I stayed up last night...ha ha.

The plot alternates between Bree's first person and Marshall's third person points of view. Bree's infant son is kidnapped while her husband is out of town on a business trip. She assumes it is because they are wealthy and the kidnapper(s) must want money. But she soon discovers that the motives are far more sinister and what they ask o
Apr 10, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Big let down, I loved Never Have I Ever so I had really high hopes for Mother May I. I'd say the first 50% was really pretty good, easily 4 stars. Once Trey gets to share his side of the story it all fell apart for me. It seemed to get worse and worse as the last 50% wrapped up. ...more
I really loved Joshilyn Jackson’s previous novel NEVER HAVE I EVER, so I had high hopes for this one. I’m happy to report that I was not disappointed!

As with NEVER HAVE I EVER, the strength of the story lay in its characters. Similarly to Amy, main protagonist of the author’s previous book, Bree Cabbat seems to be an ordinary cookie-baking and playdate-organising housewife and mother of three. Having married a wealthy husband, she almost came across as a bit sheltered and pampered, but that ini
Apr 01, 2021 rated it liked it
Bree Cabbat is the wife of Trey, a wealthy and successful lawyer. Together they have a beautiful home, two intelligent, competitive teenage daughters, Anna Claire and Peyton and an infant son, Robert. It would seem that their perfect life is untouchable, that is until Robert is abducted while sleeping in his car seat. Bree only looked away for a split second, but that’s all it took for someone to snatch him from the school parking lot. There doesn’t seem to be a safe place anywhere in this day a ...more
Feb 02, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021-books, arc
This story has a complex plot that sustains the suspense throughout. Often times books that start off with a bang begin to drag a bit in the middle while building to the big bang finish. Not so with Mother May I. It wasn't a twisty thriller with I-didn't-see-that-coming plot points, but more of a reveal of some of the characters past bad decisions. It caught me and held my interest throughout.

Bree is attending the play rehearsal of her eldest daughter when she turns away from her baby for a few
3.5 Stars! Thought-provoking, chilling, and gripping!

MOTHER MAY I by JOSHILYN JACKSON is a twisty domestic thriller that kept me intrigued and entertained right to the very end. I absolutely loved the witch angle, it added an extra layer of suspense to the storyline for me.

I listened to the audiobook which was narrated by the author. To be honest I didn't immediately connect with the narration but as the story continued and it became more interesting then I started to enjoy her voice that much m
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Bree turned her back for one minute, and her son was gone.

What could have happened? She found out soon enough. It was the woman who had been lurking in her yard and in the parking lot of the school that had taken him.

The woman who had her son had Bree doing things she never would have done, but she had to do them to get her son back.

She found out that even though she did everything the woman said including murder, her son was still with this woman and in danger.

Talk about tension...this book wil
Eva K (journeyofthepages)
Feb 17, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, audiobook
Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson is a wild ride! This is a suspenseful family drama with a strong underlying mystery that kept me invested from beginning to end. This was my first Joshilyn Jackson book and wow did it impress! I was thoroughly hooked by the story and intrigued by the characters - I didn't like many of them but I still wanted to know everything. I wanted to know the why, the how, and the what is going to happen next every turn of the page. And boy were there some twists that had m ...more
Nov 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow what a book this was! What a mother will do to save her child.
The book begins with Bree seeing a witch in her bedroom window, quickly dismissing it. The next thing we know her infant son, Robert is taken with a note not to call the police and do everything this mysterious person tells her.
Bree joins forces with an old friend as they hunt for their son. The puzzle delivers shocking twists and disturbing lies and secrets.

Definitely one of my favorite books by Jackson! Thanks to Edelweiss fo
3.5. A nice little read about revenge! It's not often I find a new author and want to pick up another of their books but Joshilyn is one. She blended the right mix of plot keeping the reader engaged trying to determine the twist we knew would come. And this one is full of twists!! ...more
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Jackson's latest novel, MOTHER MAY is available NOW at your favorite bookseller!

New York Times and USA today bestselling novelist Joshilyn Jackson is the author of MOTHER MAY I and eight other books, including NEVER HAVE I EVER, gods in Alabama and The Almost Sisters. Her work has been translated into more than a dozen languages, won SIBA’s novel of the year, three times been a #1 Book Sense Pick,

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