A woman trying to lead a normal life after fleeing a cult is dragged back to investigate when her mother suddenly kills herself.
Amanda Sinclair hasn’t always been the woman she is today, a proud lab worker at up-and-coming Bellefountaine Cosmetics. She was once Amanda Framingham, member of the Children of the Greater God church, a cult run by charismatic Patrick Collier. In Amanda’s late teens, her mother killed Amanda’s youngest brother, earning her lifelong notoriety and a spot at Elgin, a mental institution that promised to keep her safely sheltered from the public.
Amanda has changed her name and pretends she’s never heard of the Children of the Greater God until an unsettling phone call from Elgin changes everything. In spite of the institution’s best efforts, Amanda’s mother has committed suicide, and Amanda has to go claim the body because her surviving brother, Dylan, wrote their mother off years ago. While there, Amanda collects her mother’s possessions and talks with helpful psychiatrist Dr. Sam Ashmore about what might have driven her mother to take her own life.
The answer may be found in the possessions Amanda collects, including photographs she’s sure someone sent to drive her mother into depression. But who? And how is her mother’s death related to the impending release of Patrick Collier, imprisoned for bank fraud, who’s about to rejoin his community of believers? If Amanda’s suspicions are correct, she may be the next target.
Unlikely allies drive a story in which Rendahl (Dead Letter Day, 2013, etc.) never lets her heroine escape her past.