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The Girl Who Lived by Christopher Greyson / Review by Sharon Marchisello


By Christopher Greyson

Greyson Media Associates | $28.00
Nov. 4, 2017


Review by Sharon Marchisello

Wall Street Journal bestselling author Christopher Greyson has created a thriller on par with The Girl on the Train, only with more suspects, more danger, and more agony for the young heroine. The Girl Who Lived takes the reader inside the head of a girl who narrowly escaped a massacre, complete with survivor’s guilt, second-guessing, and fantasies of suicide.

Ten years earlier, Faith Winters and her sister Kim were on their way to their family’s cabin to celebrate Faith’s thirteenth birthday with their father; Faith’s best friend, Anna; and Anna’s mother. On their way from the parking area, Faith noticed a creepy-looking, rat-faced man watching them. Kim entered the cabin first and emerged seconds later, bleeding from a fatal stab wound, and screamed for Faith to run.

The police concluded that Faith’s father and Anna’s mother were having an affair. Something went terribly wrong—perhaps she was about to break up with him—which caused him to snap and kill her, with their daughters as collateral damage, and then shoot himself in the back of the head. Faith doesn’t want to believe it, but her memory of the event is hazy. Except for a clear image of the man from the parking lot whom she has nicknamed Rat Face, and whose existence the police are unable to confirm.

Since the murders of her sister, father, and friends, Faith’s life has been purgatory. She has suffered bullying, fought addiction, tangled with the law, and been in and out of mental institutions. Her mother, a therapist, dealt with her own grief by writing a memoir, ironically titled The Girl Who Lived, which exposes Faith’s struggles. The therapy exercise became a bestseller, so Faith can’t go anywhere now without being recognized, pitied, and feared.

When the story opens, Faith is being released from her latest confinement, trying to ease back into society under the watchful eyes of her mother, probation officer, and sponsors of several 12-step programs. Despite admonitions from everyone, she is determined to track down Rat Face and find her sister’s killer. Just when she thinks she has an ally, a cloud of suspicion is cast over that character, and she pulls back. Items disappear or are moved, causing Faith to doubt her sanity. Bad things keep happening, and Faith looks guiltier and guiltier. She doesn’t know whom to trust…not even herself.

The author beautifully captures the raw emotions and chilling terror of the troubled heroine. This page-turner will keep you guessing until the end, because, as a reader, you won’t know who can be trusted, either. And then you will be shocked.

Christopher Greyson ( is the author of the bestselling Detective Jack Stratton mystery/thriller series. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katherine, who is also an author, and their two children.

Sharon Marchisello ( is the author of Going Home, (Sunbury Press, 2014) a murder mystery inspired by her mother’s battle with Alzheimer’s. She earned a Masters in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California and is a member of the Atlanta Chapter of Sisters in Crime. She lives in Peachtree City, GA, with her husband and cat, does volunteer work for the Fayette Humane Society, and writes a blog about personal finance, Countdown to Financial Fitness