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Not My Mother

4.35  ·  Rating details ·  219 ratings  ·  67 reviews
They arrest my mother in the middle of my baby daughter’s first birthday party.
They say she’s not really my mother.
They say she stole me, thirty years ago…

I’d heard of the Baby Caroline case, of course. When a baby is snatched from her mother’s arms, the whole country knows about it. But I never dreamed it had anything to do with me.

Today, my daughter turned one. I hosted
Published March 30th 2021 by Bookouture
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Jazz Webb
Apr 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. It's almost everyone's worse nightmare coming true. Your mum gets arrested at your child's first birthday party and you find out the reason she was arrested is because she kidnapped you when you were a baby, Marion discovers that she's tbe famous baby Caroline who was kidnapped from her crib.

I just was hooked with this book from day dot. U wanted to find out why Eileen had kidnapped Marion and what the heck is going on .
All my questions were answered and more.

Lucy Cotterill
Mar 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Miranda Smith, NetGalley and Bookouture for the advance review copy of Not My Mother.

Marion is having a party at her home to celebrate her daughter's first birthday when the police knock at her door and place her mother under arrest. They claim her Mother Eileen isn't who she says she is - but is in fact a woman named Sarah Paxton - accused of murdering a man and kidnapping Baby Caroline over 30 years ago. Marion's world is turned upside down as she is faced with the prospect of her wh
Feb 27, 2021 rated it really liked it
An intriguing thriller with brilliant twists that keeps you riveted till the very end. 
Single mom Marion Sams' idyllic life is shattered when her mother Eileen is arrested for a murder and kidnapping case that took place over thirty years ago. Marion realises that her whole life, even her own name, has been a lie, concocted by the woman she calls Mom. As she comes to terms with her new reality, more secrets and betrayals are revealed, making her second guess where her loyalties should lie. At t
DJ Sakata
Apr 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
My Rating:


Favorite Quotes:

Being a screw-up is genetic, I think. It is as hereditary as any other trait. I come from a long line of screw-ups, and although I was able to persevere, I had my missteps.

For a moment, Mom appears younger, like she is reverting to her prime, leaving behind the frail woman in her bed fighting to heal. Memories are an elixir in their own way, relieving the hardness of time, transporting a person back to a place, to see that familiar face, inhale that familiar smell.

Mar 28, 2021 rated it really liked it
Many thanks to NetGalley, Bookouture and Miranda Smith for the eARC, in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.

I thoroughly enjoyed Not My Mother.
The plot is intriguing, and had me hooked from the very beginning.

I found it hard to put down and definitely suffered from ‘just-one-more-chapter’ syndrome whilst reading it.

Plenty of suspense and many twists and turns, although some of the twists I had already fathomed.

Overall, an excellent thriller.
I would recommend.

★★★★★ 4.5 stars

I am excited to be taking part in the #BooksOnTour #BlogTour for Miranda Smith's intriguing domestic drama NOT MY MOTHER.

After the last book by this author, which I found extremely disappointing, I wasn't sure what to expect. However, I was pleasantly surprised. NOT MY MOTHER is an intriguing thriller of sorts that keeps you engaged from beginning to end with a few surprising twists along the way.

The story takes place in North Bay, a small beach town on the east coast bordering th
Kirsty Noah-whitlock
Mar 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing

Review for 'Not My Mother' by Miranda Smith.

Read and reviewed via NetGalley for Miranda Smith, Bookouture publishers and Bookouture anonymous

Publication date 30th March 2021.

This is the second book I have read by this author. The first book I read was called 'The One Before' which I loved and would also highly recommend.

I was originally drawn to this book by its eye catching and colouful cover and its captivating synopsis. The synopsis stated that this book is perfect for fan
Mar 29, 2021 rated it really liked it
Not My Mother is the latest psychological thriller by Miranda Smith and revolves around a mother who has been accused of stealing her daughter three decades earlier. Set in North Bay, a small beach town on the east coast with views out over the Atlantic ocean, the prologue begins in 1987 with Amelia Parker waking up by her family’s backyard pool to find her husband, Bruce, dead at her feet. Laying in a pool of blood, he was completely still and his eyes were closed. The affluent couple from New ...more
Linda Boa
Apr 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-for-blog
For a while, I was hesitant about reading psychological thrillers unless they were by authors I trusted to deliver a cracker. So many of them are predictable, or disappointing, or – especially – too similar to others. However, I’m delighted I took the chance with the thoroughly enjoyable US-set Not My Mother. Bookouture seem to be building up a really good list of books, and this definitely qualifies as one.

It begins dramatically, with a young mum, Marion, hosting her daughter’s first birthday p
Mar 01, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Thank you NetGalley and Bookouture for a copy of "Not My Mother" in exchange for an honest review.

Ms. Smith has written an absolutely engaging thriller that had some very surprising and unexpected twists and turns. While I wanted to keep reading to find out what was truly happening, I also didn't really want the book to end.

The story takes place in North Bay, a small beach town on the Atlantic. The story is told through several perspectives. It begins with "Amelia - Then", she appears to have b
Kasi Viaud
Mar 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
If you are looking for a book that will make you want to keep reading because you just keep wanting to know what happens next, even though you are so tired you are almost going cross-eyed, then you should check out this book. Seriously.

Honestly, I wasn't entirely sure what I was expecting out of this but I was amazed at how quickly I was pulled into the story. This book was legitimately difficult to put down. I found myself constantly thinking, "one more chapter, one more chapter..." until it wa
Melissa Suslowicz Bartz
Mar 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
My Review:

What a quick, easy, and wonderful read this was. I love when books just come together like this. Each chapter leaves you wanting more and you can’t put it down until you finish. This was my first read by this author and I loved it.

This book was about a daughter that was at odds about who her mother really was. Was she this evil person that supposedly kidnapped her so long ago? Or was she the loving mother that she’s always known that looked out for her and took care of her all her life
Mar 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Marion Sams is hosting a first birthday party for her daughter, Ava. She is a single mother and happy with her life. She, along with her mother, Eileen, and business partner Des, own and run an eatery called The Shack. She has lived in this town all of her life and loves it. The restaurant is popular with both locals and tourists visiting the nearby beaches. Many friends are with them today, including her best friend, Carmen, who is an attorney. Just as they are ready to light the candles on Ava ...more
Laura Maher
Mar 02, 2021 rated it liked it
Marion is celebrating! Her only daughter is turning one year old, and they're partying with what seems like the entire community at her family-owned restaurant. When the party is interrupted by the police, there to arrest her mother, Marion's entire world turns upside down. It seems like she is the missing "Baby Caroline", stolen out of her crib during a terrible summer day 30 years prior. Has Marion been living a lie for decades and didn't know? Is her mother guilty of the awful crimes she has ...more
Mar 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2021-reads
“There are real monsters out there, some closer than you would prefer to admit.”

How can you learn the truth when your whole life is a lie?

“Not My Mother,” by Miranda Smith, is absolutely the best psychological thriller I’ve read in a long time! Smith writes about ordinary people put in extraordinary situations and sprinkles it with domestic and psychological suspense.

Eileen Sams, her daughter, Marion and her granddaughter, Ava, are just blowing out the candles on Ava’s first birthday cake when
Mar 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Miranda Smith has written a truly engaging thriller that had so many unexpected twists and turns. I found myself constantly gasping in disbelief that yet another fact I thought to be true was instead twisted by context. I didn't want to put this down but also really didn't want it to end because I grew so attached to the characters.

As Marion is throwing a birthday party for her daughter, her mother is arrested for a crime that she supposedly committed over 30 years ago, which she never told Mar
Mar 31, 2021 rated it it was ok
It’s your daughter first birthday party. It’s supposed to be one of the happiest days for you. You’re with all the people you love and care about, celebrating your daughter. When a knock at the door comes, it’s the cops and they are arresting your mother. They tell you that your mother not only kidnapped you when you were 3 months old, but she murdered your father. Everything you’ve even known about your life is a lie, and what do you do now?

This premise really drew me in. I was so intrigued to
Heidi Lynn’s BookReviews
Apr 01, 2021 rated it really liked it
First, I want to thank Miranda Smith, Bookouture and NetGalley for providing me with this book so I can bring you this review.

OMG!! What would you do if you knew your whole life was one huge lie? Miranda Smith’s Not My Mother reads like a true life story ripped from the headlines. It is an unbelievably horrific, tragic, intense, suspenseful read with twists and turns.

Miranda sure knows how to write an intense prologue that hooked me into her story! It was incredibly gripping!

Even though I am
Apr 05, 2021 rated it it was amazing
'Not my mother' by Miranda Smith starts at a regular pace but then it gently takes you through a well woven plot with unexpected twists at unlikely times.

Miranda Smith has written a beautiful story capturing emotions of motherhood through the eyes of three different women, Eileen, Marion, Amelia. Each of them have sought motherhood in their own way.

Marion is celebrating her daughter's 1st birthday at the restaurant she has helped build. Unbeknownst to her, police crash the party and arrest her
Erica Nicole
Mar 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing
“The joy and the pain. It takes both to make a life. It takes both to live one.”

The author's writing style is to live for. Suspenseful but not unnecessarily so. Concocted just the right way. The way it was written draws out emotion and encourages empathy for the characters. Whether the reader be a teenager struggling to put their life together, a mom grappling with the challenges of parenthood, a thoughtful friend, a father, a beloved, a child.

The book also brought up vivid visualizations in m
Mar 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is one of those books that if it wasn't for real life getting in the way, I could have easily sat and read this book in one sitting. I was so engrossed that I didn't want to put it down until I had uncovered the truth.

I couldn't think of anything worse than realising your whole life has been built on lies. I really felt for Marion whose world is torn apart when her mother is arrested for taking her thirty years ago. How do you overcome something like this or move on? The love you felt for t
Melanie’s reads
Oh my goodness where to start! This book had me all flustered with it’s legacy of secrets and lies. Poor Marion is in the midst of her daughter’s birthday party when the police turn up to arrest her mother but calling her by a different name. Who is Sarah Paxton?

Imagine the person who has raised you and been your only constant is now taken away from you and investigated for murder and kidnapping. Accused of murdering a father and attacking a mother, who has spent the last thirty years desperatel
marnie | once upon a time book reviews
Apr 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2021
Miranda Smith has done it again and produced another book that kept me up until all hours reading it. If you are a fan of psychological thrillers, then you will want to add Not My Mother to your reading for 2021.

Not My Mother is a thought provoking tale that gets you thinking what would you do if you found yourself in these circumstances. An emotional journey that pulls on the heartstrings, it is also so much more with its jaw dropping revelations that I so love in a psychological thriller.

Tamsin Preece
Feb 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Everyone has heard of the Baby Caroline case. More than 30 years ago she was stolen from her nursery with her father murdered and her mother left for dead. Single parent Marion Sams is horrified when the police arrive at her daughter Ava’s first birthday party arrest her mother, Eileen. Soon she discovers they believe her to be baby Caroline. Has her whole life been a lie?

I enjoyed this book! There were a few procedural issues I felt were unrealistic (there is no way the DNA test wouldn’t have b
Mar 30, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2021
Marion has been looking forward to her daughter's 1st birthday.
But little does she know that the day will stay in her memory for a completely different reason. When the party is suddenly interrupted and her mother gets arrested, Marion can't believe the accusations.
Did her mother really kidnap a baby in the late '80s? Is Marion really baby Caroline?

I was a bit sceptical when I started reading this book as baby kidnapping plots have been explored so many times that I wasn't sure if this story wo
AJ Holmes
Apr 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Don't pass this one up!

I'm a fan of Miranda Smith and like her other titles, this one was really good. Marion has led a pretty sheltered life on account of her mother never wanting to travel or go anywhere. Never knowing fully why, Marion was prohibited from participating in school trips, sleep overs, and often wondered why she'd never met any other family members to include her own father. Now, an adult with a child of her own, Marion's life is flipped on its head when her mother is arrested at
Sneha's Thriller Reads
Mar 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I didn't even think twice before giving this book 5 stars. Hell, it's that good! Thriller lovers, buckle up for this amazing book which delivers a perfect story with an even more perfect plot.
This story is sharp, gritting and mysterious. It will leave you full and empty at the same time. You won't be able to put this down.

I just couldn't stop reading it! Everytime I wanted to stop, my inner self screamed " One more chapter pleaseee"! But I'm so glad I finished it quickly because now I'm content
Mar 18, 2021 rated it liked it
During Marion's daughter first birthday party celebration, her mother is arrested under accusation of murder and kidnapping.
Can Marion be the missing "baby Caroline", abducted from her legitimate parents 30 years ago when she was just 3 months old?
Can the mother she knows not be her real mother? Can she be this Sarah who committed those awful crimes all those years ago? Is her whole life based on a series of lies?
The premise of the story is a great one, the theme of motherhood is very interestin
Claire Bailey
Mar 28, 2021 rated it did not like it
Nope, nope, nope! I really didn’t like this book. It was such a disappointment from such an exciting premise.

At just 20% in I knew this book wasn’t for me but I kept going - just incase I was wrong! The story felt very one dimensional and lack lustre, hugely repetitive too which I detest.

This is a book that would’ve been better as a short story as it is apparently clear that a simple dna test would’ve answered half of the characters worries and inner monologue. Sadly, plot wise this took a month
Apr 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
From the prologue to the last page, this book keeps you engaged the entire time.

The story takes place in the present with chapters mixed in explaining what happened in the past. The flow between both times worked perfectly. I think the author did a great job entwining the stories and not giving too much away, just enough to keep us wanting more.

The author added in many different twists and turns, I especially liked how she would mention a detail and then bring it back full circle with everythin
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Miranda Smith writes domestic and psychological suspense. She is drawn to stories about ordinary people in extraordinary situations. Her debut novel, SOME DAYS ARE DARK, will be released in March 2020.

Miranda has been a staff writer at a local newspaper and a secondary English teacher. When it comes to fiction, Miranda writes about complicated women, dark impulses and Southern settings.

She lives i

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“Eileen is true—” “Do you think it’s true?” I stare at her, hoping she’ll be honest. Although, honesty is hard in this complicated situation. She’s my mother, and even I don’t know if I believe what they’re saying about her. I know I don’t want to believe it. “It’s never my responsibility to decide whether a person did the crime they’re accused of committing. My job is to argue reasonable doubt. I find the holes in the prosecution’s case and go from there.” “Do you think there is reasonable doubt? Are there holes in the case?” “You already know the police are alleging your mother’s” 0 likes
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