WE BEGIN AT THE END By Chris Whitaker



Thirty years ago, Vincent King became a killer.

Now, he’s been released from prison and is back in his hometown of Cape Haven, California. Not everyone is pleased to see him. Like Star Ridley, his ex girlfriend, and sister of the girl he killed.

Duchess Ridley, Star’s thirteen year old daughter, is part cared, part protector to her younger brother, Robin – and to her deeply troubled mother. But in trying to protect Star, Duchess inadvertently sets off a chain of events that will have tragic consequences not only for her family, but also the whole town.

Murder, revenge, retribution

How far can we run from the past when the past seems doomed to repeat itself?


Sometimes you just pick up a book that hits you hard, the characters stay with you, even after finishing the book. This is one of those books. I haven’t read any of Chris Whitaker’s books so this is a new author for me. What an author he is.

Setting the atmosphere of life in a small American town, Cape Haven, California, a place that has seen better days, along with characters we really want to care about. Duchess Radley is a teenage girl, but old beyond her years, a time when she should be enjoying her youth, but she has to protect her young brother Robin, as well as her mother Star who is either drunk or drugged up most of the time, but who’s sister Sissy, was killed thirty years earlier. The man who was convicted of her killing Vincent King is released from prison, and has returned to the town.

Duchess is not worried about King coming out of prison, she claims to be an outlaw, she is more concerned about another figure who looms over her mother’s troubled life, Darke.

Walker is now the Chief of Police in the town, known as Walk, he was also a childhood friend of Vincent’s, he picks him up from the prison, still not understanding exactly what happened the night Sissy died. But Vincent will not talk about the past. Walk wants to know the truth. He believes his friend is innocent, he takes the reader through the past and present, investigating the case that all had thought to have been solved many years earlier, but at the same time protecting and watching out for Star, Duchess and Robin. He is a believable, endearing character. He is dedicated, determined and truly commendable.

This is a slow paced start of a story, drawing the reader in to know the characters, seen through the eyes of Duchess protector of her family. She has had to deal with far too much for her young years, she is tough, brave and spiky, at times you forget that she is only thirteen. But the actions of Duchess start a chain of events that lead to tragic consequences. There were times I felt my concentration drop a bit, especially at the start, but about half way through it picked up, and the series of unexpected twists at the end were just, brilliant. Beautiful writing.

It certainly deserves ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ out of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ atmospheric, heartbreaking.

I would like to thank #netgalley and #Zaffre for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest, fair and unbiased review.

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