Review: Keep You Close by Karen Cleveland

Keep You Close

Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Author: Karen Cleveland
Released: May 28th, 2019
Received: Goodreads Giveaways
Warnings: Rape, control, harassment, stalking
Rating: 3 1/2 kitties

I received a copy of Keep You Close through the Goodreads Giveaways program.

Keep You Close is another thriller from the mind that brought you Need to Know. It follows Stephanie Maddox, an FBI agent who specializes in Internal Affairs. She’s not afraid to take on the big guys, even when the price to do so is high.

Keep You Close was a fast paced thriller, full of twists and turns, flashbacks, and emotional revelations. Fans of Karen Cleveland will be thrilled (no pun intended) with her latest novel.

Spoiler Warning

Warnings: There are some very sensitive subjects covered in this novel. (Spoiler warning) Early on in the book, the main character is raped. She uses the pain and anger to push herself forward and to help other victims. She helps others who are victimized, targeting the large players that normally get away with these crimes. Control, harassment, and stalking all make appearances in this novel.

Keep You Close was a fascinating novel. And a deeply disturbing one. It explores corruption within government agencies, and just how far it can go. All of this was possible thanks to the main character, Stephanie Maddox.

Stephanie is an FBI agent working in Internal Affairs. Like I mentioned above, she goes after the ‘big guys’ that normally intimidate people. As such, she’s had to sacrifice a lot to go after them.

A lot of this novel is focused on Stephanie’s job and the sacrifices she’s had to make in order to get the job done. It’s hard not to be sympathetic and understanding towards her, especially given what she’s trying to accomplish.

Normally I get frustrated when a novel will used rape as a way of causing character growth. But in this case it was less a cause for character growth, and more a reason for her to be tied to (not to mention hunting) predators the public overlooks. I still think it might have been a bit heavy handed at time, but I certainly understand the intent that was here.

There were a lot of twists and turns in this novel. And it got very complex. We were given just enough where it was possible to figure out some of what was happening behind the scenes. But I’m not sure that readers could piece it all together. There was too much left out.

Still, it made for a fast paced read. It was fun trying to figure out how Stephanie’s son mixed into the whole mess. That was a brilliant choice – having him be a part of this. And forcing Stephanie to try and figure out his involvement – or lack thereof.

While this probably wasn’t my favorite thriller novel out there, I enjoyed enough about it where I’m going to be keeping an eye on Karen Cleveland. I’ll be curious to see what she writes next!

About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, reader, and much more. While my photography blog is feeling a bit neglected at the moment, the other sites I'm involved in are going strong. ✧I review books, comics, and basically anything else in the literary world over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books). ✧I review comics and books, as well as write content for Word of the Nerd. ✧I review comics for Monkeys Fighting Robots. ✧I write content for Screen Rant and CBR. ✧I write book reviews for The Review Crew.
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