Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson

What are the lengths you would go to in protecting your family? I'd walk the ends of the earth to make sure my family and friends are okay. When you think about the situations you may encounter, you might think of driving at late hours, lending/spending money, or even just being an open ear to listen. But what about things that are a little bit more morally ambiguous? What secrets would you keep? What laws would you break? How far is too far? In her latest thriller Mother May I, Joshilyn Jackson grapples with that question. 

As a mother of three, Bree rarely gets any quiet time. As she wakes up early in the morning, her two teenage daughters, infant son, and husband are all still asleep. This is her moment, a quiet time to just be with her thoughts, uninterrupted. As Bree stares out of the bedroom window, her solace is suddenly broken, giving way to first confusion and then terror. Staring back at her, just on the other side of the glass is a witch. The witch has all the notable features, wrinkled skin, wiry grey hair, cloaked in black, a look of pure menace upon her face. Hesitant to believe what she's seeing, Bree quickly glances away and back. In that instant, the witch is gone, like the remnants of a nightmare that managed a brief escape from the world of dreams. 

That odd occurrence stays with Bree as she begins her day. She takes her daughters to school, her infant in hand, and tries to forget the scare that began her morning. But she sees the witch again, this time in the parking lot of the school. Her mind must be playing tricks on her. Bree turns away from her infant son for just a moment, distracted by the goings-on at the school. That's all it takes. When she turns back around, her son is gone. Just as panic sets in, she gets the call. The unmistakable voice of the witch is on the other line. She has her son, and Bree will do whatever she asks to get him back. 

There's something both terrifying and relatable to any story involving child abduction. Recent thrillers like Adrian McKinty's The Chain and C.J. Tudor's The Other People have used a kidnapping to propel their stories, but Joshilyn Jackson takes things a step further. Mother May I sees the author not only explore the lengths a mother is willing to go to save her child but also forces that same character to come to terms with her own place in the world. Her privilege, marriage, and troubled past all come into question, adding depth to the novel that takes it beyond the typical thriller. I had the privilege of listening to the audio version of the book, a gift from the publisher, narrated by the author herself. The same passion and suspense that Jackson imbues in her writing come forth in her narration. Mother May I is everything I want from a thriller, suspenseful, quick to read, and with just enough extra depth to keep you thinking about it after you finish. 

For more information, visit the author's website, Amazon, and Goodreads

(2021, 14)


This entry was posted on Saturday, April 17, 2021 and is filed under ,,,,,,,,. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response.

30 Responses to “Mother May I by Joshilyn Jackson”

  1. Well that's creepy! And very suspenseful, too. Makes me wonder what all Bree ends up doing in this one to get her son back.

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    1. It is pretty terrifying, and well worth the read to see what happens next!

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  2. Damn, that is creepy AF. Definitely hopping over to the library catalog now to look for it.

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    1. Glad I could help add some new stuff to your TBR!

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    2. Right, because there is not enough on the list already, lol :P I am #14 on two copies.

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    3. I'm a firm believer that there's no harm in a robust TBR list haha

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    4. Lol, agreed. I am still waiting on this one, but I finished When No One is Watching and DAMN. Hope to review it this weekend.

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    5. Ooh. I'm looking forward to your review!

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  3. Alright I am very creeped out and very airous us to what going is on here. Excellent review, Ethan๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿ‘Œ

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  4. I'm wondering if she actually saw a witch or if it's her mind was playing tricks? I'd be completely freaked out! Hope she got her son back. Sounds like an intense read!

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    1. It was all quite intense and didn't at all end up where I expected. Pretty much what I want from a thriller!

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  5. I'm glad to hear that you liked it. I haven't read this author before. That sounds so crazy and I love it.

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    1. This was my first book by her, but I'll definitely come back for more!

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  6. Oh wow, this sounds so intense and terrifying. I am definitely curious though. I actually have The Chain that I still need to read.

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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  7. Eeek this sounds super creepy! Thanks for sharing!

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  8. There is nothing more fierce than a mother trying to protect her babies. So many possibilities with this premise.

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    1. Right? It kept me guessing until the very end!

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  9. I've seen this book pop up on various blogs! Thanks for making me so curious, I've put it on my Audiobook list!! I can't wait to read it.

    Sounds like Fantasy mixed with Thriller/Mystery.

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  10. There is nothing scarier for a mom than losing a child. I've always had terrifying nightmares about losing my kids, although thankfully, it's never happened in real life. Still, I understand why authors love to write about children being kidnapped - it's such a primal fear that all parents relate to it.

    I'm a Joshilyn Jackson fan, although it's her Southern family secrets novels that I love. I haven't been as impressed with her psychological thrillers, but I'm still going to read this one. Maybe I'll find it on audio since Jackson narrates. Glad you enjoyed the book!

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    1. I think it is so interesting how authors from other genres are finding their way into thrillers. I'll have to check out her other works. If they are better than this, then they have to be pretty great!

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