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Non-fiction: American Mother

American Mother

⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 out of 5 stars

Title:               American Mother

Author:           Gregg Olsen

Publisher:        Bookouture

Format:           ARC, audiobook

Publication:     8th of November 2022

In June 1986, the emergency call from Stella Nickel, claiming that her husband Bruce was having a seizure, shook the small town of Auburn in Washington State. A week later, fifteen-year-old Hayley finds her mother collapsed on the bathroom floor. Soon, the investigators discovered that in both cases, the victims took painkillers tainted with cyanide…

This was a fascinating true crime story. It starts small and contained, but we understand the panic of customers quite soon, as no one knows if there are more tainted pills. The FBI and big pharmaceutical companies get involved. Moreover, Gregg Olsen has a natural gift for writing family histories. He relates the whole life story of Stella Nickel and her mother in this book and makes this simple story addictive. The amount of time and effort the author has to put into writing his books is incredible. He also writes from a very objective point of view, narrating the story and leaving the judgement to those more qualified.

It is hard to talk about favourite moments or characters in a book like this, but I found Hayley’s story especially appealing. Her young age makes her narrative emotional and heartbreaking. I recommend this book to all fans of true crime stories, especially those interested in the family drama surrounding those tragedies.

Thank you, NetGalley and publisher, for providing the arc of this novel in exchange for an honest review.


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