‘Don’t Turn Around’ by Jessica Barry | #20BooksofSummer

Author : Jessica Barry
Title : Don’t Turn Around
Pages : 400
Publisher : Vintage
Publication date : April 15, 2021


Cait’s job is to transport women to safety. Out of respect, she never asks any questions. Like most of the women, Rebecca is trying to escape something. 

But what if Rebecca’s secrets put them both in danger? There’s a reason Cait chooses to keep on the road, helping strangers. She has a past of her own, and knows what it’s like to be followed.

And there is someone right behind them, watching their every move.


Cait and Rebecca are two women who have never met before. Yet, they are embarking on a road trip that might possibly but you off that concept for ever.

Cait’s job is to transport women to safety, no questions asked. So it’s obvious from the start that Rebecca is running away from something. Or someone. But it takes a while for that to be revealed. Cait has secrets too and when it looks as if someone is following them, the question is not only who but also why, and are they following Cait or Rebecca?

There’s a constant sense of utter creepiness throughout this storyline, especially if you’re a woman reading this. Just imagine, two women in a car, in the middle of the night, on a deserted stretch of highway. That feeling you get where you don’t trust anyone, including the gas station attendant. Shudder.

Now, I have to say that I did start having issues with how the majority of the men are portrayed in this story. In real life, they’re not all creeps out to do whatever wicked thing they can think of with a woman. But not one of the male characters in this story are ones you want to meet, not even in daylight. I get that this is fiction but still, a little balance would have been nice.

Don’t Turn Around‘ is a game of cat-and-mouse. It definitely has the thriller moments, it’s full of suspense but it also tackles a few unsettling and controversial topics. And when all is said and done, that seemed to be the most important thing for the author to get across here : women’s rights and empowerment.

Heartbreaking decisions, controlling men and a race against time. However, I never truly felt ‘Don’t Turn Around‘ reached its full potential. Something that could have been an excellent opportunity to get some points across, while also being a thrilling ride, unfortunately turned into a bit of a farce. There seemed to be a lot of build-up but that fizzled out and resulted in a rather underwhelming conclusion. For me, there was definitely a part in the middle where things just started to drag and I couldn’t wait for this road trip from hell to end. Only to get to the last page, and be left with a bunch of unanswered questions. Clearly this wasn’t the book for me.

Thanks to the publisher for the review copy. All opinions are my own.

Amazon UK | Bookshop UK | Hive UK | Kobo

20 Books of Summer : 11/20

  9 comments for “‘Don’t Turn Around’ by Jessica Barry | #20BooksofSummer

  1. August 12, 2021 at 8:38 am

    Seems really scary, sounds great though 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. August 12, 2021 at 8:40 am

    Fab review Eva too bad it reach it’s full potential! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. August 12, 2021 at 9:14 am

    Wow you are so hard to please these days 😳😂

    Liked by 1 person

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