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Black Out

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  6,090 ratings  ·  756 reviews
A Today Show Top Ten Pick, Florida Book Award Winner, Shortlisted for Prix Polar International Award for Best Book

On the surface, Annie Powers's life in a wealthy Florida beach neighborhood is happy and idyllic. Her husband, Gray, loves her fiercely; together, they dote on their beautiful young daughter, Victory. But the bubble surrounding Annie is pricked when she senses
Paperback, 386 pages
Published October 22nd 2009 by Arrow (first published January 1st 2008)
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Average rating 3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,090 ratings  ·  756 reviews

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I totally forgot to review this one! I drove extra places listening to this and put my hand up for being an extra busy taxi mum during this audio book. Annie and Gray are madly in love with a lovely daughter. Annie's past is creeping up on her though. She lived a terrible youth alongside a narcissistic mother - don't you just hate reading about these sorts of characters, makes me shudder! Annie is an unreliable narrator to the extreme; given her trauma she enters a highly dissociative state. Her ...more
Sep 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh that was good! That was SO good! It was so tense that I could not stop reading and finished the whole book in one day. This was my second book by this author and I shall certainly seek out more of her work. I enjoyed the way the story moved from past to present and I felt an attachment to the main characters and wanted them to survive to the end. And there was always doubt whether this would happen! A real page turner and recommended reading for anyone who enjoys a good thriller.
Jul 19, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A lot of unfulfilled potential. Not recommended. Below is a breakdown of my rating:

Enjoyability: 3
Re-Readability: 1
Character Development: 2
Complexity: 3.5
Writing Style: 2
Believability: 2
Overall: 2.25

I picked this book up to read over vacation because I liked the description of the plot. The book started out rather slow; a lot of recounting of past events. In fact, after the first two chapters, I started over and re-read them to try to get a better handle of what was occurring when.

Once the nove
Did Not Finish
Unger begins with "U", and for a challenge, I needed a mystery writer beginning with "U". She's written lots of books, and this one seems pretty popular, but by golly, I just couldn't get interested.

We have a troubled, confused young mother with a lot to hide, and as her secrets are revealed (both to her and to us), I expected to be drawn in.

Nope. Just didn't like her much or care and wasn't interested in any of the other characters either. I read half, skimmed some more, but I d
Two stars for me is an "ok" read. This was too long. There was also one part of the main character's journey that I think ended abruptly (do I not remember what happened or did the author not know what to do?). Anyway, just ok. ...more
Lisa Unger is such an interesting author to read - each time I do I feel as though it is a completely different experience from any of her other books. I also find myself learning a lot about a topic that I totally didn't expect.

In "Blackout" the primary character, Annie Powers, is a beautiful socialite but who has had a horrific trauma in her past. That past has caught up with her - or did it ever leave - and now her mind is unable to cope with all of the realities and the lies that have been p
Jul 13, 2008 added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Absolutely NO ONE!!!!
Recommended to Kathy by: I had read other books by this author.
What was real? What was imaginary? I feel like I need to check into a mental hospital after reading this book. Black Out really messes with your mind and not in a good way. It is very doubtful that I will read any other Lisa Unger books. I was left to wonder....what happened?
Wendi Lee
*4.75 stars*

Annie Powers has a lovely, peaceful life with her husband and young daughter. No one would ever guess that she was once Ophelia March, stepdaughter to a serial killer, in love with his equally sadistic son. Those events were solidly in her past. But soon strange events happen that make Annie think she isn't safe after all, and she must figure out how to protect herself and her daughter from her horrific past.

Lisa Unger knows how to tell a story! This one was riveting from the very b
Jun 01, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: suspense
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 29, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010, favorites
This is the first time I've read anything by Unger, but she has now earned a place on my list of "newly-discovered-and-now-in-complete-awe-of" authors! I can't wait to read all of her other works.

For the past three days, I have been completely immersed in this book, only putting it down when it was necessary to deal with certain real-life issues and get some sleep. It grabbed hold of me and refused to let go until I'd finished the very last page. The main character is Annie, who used to be Ophe
Nov 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-read
Annie Powers leads a happy, healthy and wealthy life and is happily married to Gray and they have a beautiful daughter, Victory. In fact, you could say that those who know her well believe she possesses the perfect life, but does she?

Something from Annie's past reappears and now Annie finds herself confused and she has no idea how to escape her past, a past she had forgotten and left behind years ago.

Well, I must say I'm so glad I decided to read another book by Lisa Unger because I truly enjoye
Jordan Price
I think, initially, I wanted to be persnickety about some things like character voice (a trailer trash girl with a GED who uses whom/whomever in speech, for instance -- and how convenient it was they had so much money that they could hire planes, boats, etc.), but then the story sucked me in, and I didn't give a rat's ass if it was written the way I would have, and I gave myself over to the story.

The mystery is like a set of Russian nesting dolls. Every time you think you know what's going on, i
More of a 3.5 stars. I enjoyed it. The last 1/3 or so was really intense and I couldn't put it down. But it's one of those books that you have to pay really close attention because there is A LOT of stuff going on. Especially at the end. ...more
✴ Cindy ✴
The writing was great, but there was something missing. Using an unreliable narrator to tell a story is risky because I usually end up getting mad a the author for purposefully tricking me. In this case I didn't have a satisfied feeling at the end. There were unanswered questions. Things the author didn't or couldn't explain to my satisfaction. I found myself wanting to talk to a fellow reader to see what they thought happened. Sadly, none of the reviews answered my questions. I guess everyone e ...more
Lewis Weinstein
This is the ultimate book of unreliable narrators. Whoever says anything is not to be believed. Evidence is not to be believed. The very existence of some of the characters is not to be believed. Yet, instead of spinning out of control, Lisa Unger keeps firm command of a dazzling sequence of twists, surprises, time jumps, and venue changes. We have faith in the author to get us to the end of the journey. No more to be said without revealing something you should experience for yourself.
Apr 07, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: didn-t-finish
I wanted to like this, I really did. But I put it down about 150 pages in and just had no desire to pick it up again, even after renewing it at the library. There was so much potential for a good psychological suspense novel, but I never felt much suspense in the chapters that I read, and when I did, it turned out to be a dream or was written off in some other way.

I do admit that the author is a good writer, and there were some well-crafted passages. And as hesitant I was about the choice to use
Jun 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Unger is a master. I wish I had more time to read everything she's written. She's sort of dark, but can really weave a good one. ...more
Gun Bach
Aug 14, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An amazing, thrilling, soulsearching book that I couldn't put down. Lisa writes in a profound way, with sentences and choices of words that make me re-read paragraphs without it jarring me one little bit. I cared for the protagonist, the "I" in the story, from the first page, even if I normally shy away from stories written in the first person. This is the only way, IMHO, that Lisa could've written this story, because we needed to be in Annie/Ophelia's head to understand what she was going throu ...more
Christina Leftwich
After sticking this book out through its confusing state, Im feeling let down with the ending. I wonder if the author was just tired of writing it by that time, and the last two chapters could have been left out completely.
Feb 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent! Unique twist to the traditional "amnesia" storyline. ...more
In my mind I struggled with the most appropriate rating for this book. After consideration I've gone for a compromise score.
Black Out is a tense, intriguing psychological mystery, with many twists and surprises that drew me in. The characterisation of the main protagonists is excellent and the build-up of suspense is nail-biting. That Annie is a seriously unreliable narrator contributed an additional layer of perplexity.
One of the greatest virtues of the novel is the careful way in which Un
Yoicka Van Belle
Nov 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very beautiful and strong story :)
This was by far the best book I have read this year!! The suspense was very intense. I love psychological thrillers like this one. I seriously feel like my mind was thrown in so many directions. 5 stars!
Jo Anne B
This book really played with your mind. It was hard to tell what was real, fantasy, or a dream. This was to reflect the turmoil the main character Annie endured as she was trying to live in the present while fighting an unresolved past.
   "The truth is that I may never be fully able to discern between the actual events-or people-in my recent life and the dreams created by my psyche to heal itself. Sometimes I'm not so sure it matters."

This book was ok. It had too much mind twisting in it that yo
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book to me was a very intelligent book that showed me how someone can live a horrific life and even if they change there names or even cause a plausible death but don't actually die taking over someone else's identity that is also dead and living on with out the threat of someone you wanted to run from hopefully wont find nor will the government if you don't use WIT SEC which is Special Witness Program ran by the US Marshals to protect people that have witnessed severe crimes and other thin ...more
Great read! I picked the book up for about $8 at my local Wal-Mart; and devoured it in a weekend. It was interesting to read, great character development, good plot line that moved at a great pace.

I loved how the novel would jump between the far past, the near past, and the present... all creating a cohesive story that was intriguing. This writing technique allowed us to relate to the struggles of Annie as she tried to piece together what she had forgotten long ago; it also was an interesting te
Mar 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can't read Lisa Unger's books fast enough...

Annie Powers is a wealthy homemaker, happily married to Gray and mother to a beautiful four year old daughter, Victory. But all is not what it seems and there are ghosts and demons from her past haunting her apparently perfect and beautiful life.

A lifetime and not very long ago Annie was Ophelia March a young girl living a trouble life on the run with a man she thought she loved.

Now the past has intruded on the present and Annie struggles to figur
Dec 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, thriller, 12-09
In Black Out, Lisa Unger enthralls us with another heart-pounding thriller. In this one, we're introduced to Annie Powers, a wife and mother, who had a secret life. And not everything is what she seems. We discover her turbulent past life in flash backs, when she was known as Ophelia March. Somehow we watch how it trickles back in her past, when she breaks down and cracks at the surface. Terrible headaches, bad memories, flashbacks and nightmares, return. Everything she knew and trusted changes. ...more
Jeanette (Ms. Feisty)
There were some things about this that were hard to follow, especially the way it kept changing verb tense. Overall, though, it was a good psychological thriller. Lisa Unger always tucks some interesting insights into her novels, which are easy to miss but worth watching for.

"Most of us don't live in the present tense. We dwell in a mental place where our regrets and grudges from our past compete with our fears about the future. Sometimes we barely notice what's going on around us, we're so bus
May 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
Told in alternating chapters of the past and the present, we slowly begin to realize that all is not well with Annie/Ophelia. Given her mental status, the reader begins to wonder how much of what she says is the truth and how much of it is just in her head. The truth is made harder to see given that everyone around her seems to be lying, all for various reasons. Although certain parts of the ending begin to be easily predicted about half-way through, this is an entertaining psychological thrille ...more
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The Challenge Fac...: Krissy & K-Terror - Black Out 32 13 Oct 04, 2015 11:04AM  

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Lisa Unger is a New York Times and internationally bestselling author. With books published in twenty-eight languages and millions of copies sold worldwide, she is widely regarded as a master of suspense. Her latest release is CONFESSIONS ON THE 7:45, a Goodreads Choice Awards Nominee.

Unger’s critically acclaimed books have been named on “Best Book” lists from the Today show, Good Morning America,

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