Grab a towel—although it’s early in the year, JoAnn Chaney’s As Long as We Both Shall Live is the perfect beach read, a multiple-murder and suspense saga that will keep readers engrossed and guessing ... Chaney continues to explore dark themes with her quick but effective character studies and zippy prose. The Colorado-based author is particularly adept at juggling multiple narrators and plot lines, revealing a multitude of tantalizing thoughts and actions while keeping the suspense as high as those Rocky Mountains.
Chaney’s novel is a propulsive read, but it also takes its time and lets readers get to know its characters ... Astute thriller fans may figure out the book’s central secret long before the detectives solve the case, but there are so many twists and turns here that nearly every reader will find himself or herself taken aback at some point. Suspenseful and surprising, As Long as We Both Shall Live has more switchbacks than a steep mountainside trail.
Chaney (What You Don’t Know, 2017) alternates past and present, creating an unbearably urgent narrative, and she has a shockingly firm grasp on the barbs and ennui of long-term marriage. Readers will be convinced they know what happened, but as the nature of Marie and Matt’s relationship is revealed, watch out: This duo is one of a kind. There are no one-dimensional characters here ... doesn’t skimp on the harrowing details ... A perfectly paced, shock-studded chiller from an author to watch.
Uneven ... after a strong start, the plot loses momentum. Though the complex female characters intrigue, crass male stereotypes monopolize the narrative, robbing the tale of depth and verisimilitude. Twists abound, but poorly established stakes lessen their impact, and a subplot spotlighting Loren’s dark past distracts from the central mystery. Hopefully, Chaney will do better next time.