Black-Eyed Susans; Julia Heaberlin
Brillance Audio - 2015
When Tessie Cartwright was 16 years old she was a typical teen and track star, until one day when she went out for a run and woke up in a grave in a Texas field covered in "back-eyed susans". She was the lucky one, she survived. Next to her lie one corpse and the bones of two other girls in the same grave. These girls who would be forever referred to as, the Susans.
Although Tessie survives, she is left with no recall of what transpired and suffers with what is termed as hysterical blindness in one eye. Some 18 years later (now referred to as Tessa) she is an artist and single mother to a daughter, 14 year old Charlie. Although a man is awaiting execution for the murders, a man who always maintained his innocence, Tessa feels the serial killer may still be at large. One day someone has planted black-eyed susans outside her home giving her yet another reason to fear for her safety and that of her daughter. Tessa must confront her past with the help of psychotherapy and try to recall what happened to her decades earlier.
This is one of those creepy stories with more than a few twists. Tessa comes across as an unreliable narrator which appealed to me. At times the story felt flat and moved slowly and, the ending felt kind of odd. It was a tough listen at times on audio as the chapters were short and the POV kept changing from Tessie (past) and Tessa (present), still worthy of your time if you enjoy creepy and at times uncomfortable stories.