Saint X By Alexis Schaitkin (Book Review)

Title: Saint X
By: Alexis Schaitkin
Publisher: Celadon Books
Publication Date: February 18, 2020
ISBN: 9781250219596
Pages: 352

Claire is only seven years old when her college-age sister, Alison, disappears on the last night of their family vacation at a resort on the Caribbean island of Saint X. Several days later, Alison’s body is found in a remote spot on a nearby cay, and two local men – employees at the resort - are arrested. But the evidence is slim, the timeline against it, and the men are soon released. The story turns into national tabloid news, a lurid mystery that will go unsolved. For Claire and her parents, there is only the return home to broken lives.

Years later, Claire is living and working in New York City when a brief but fateful encounter brings her together with Clive Richardson, one of the men originally suspected of murdering her sister. It is a moment that sets Claire on an obsessive pursuit of the truth - not only to find out what happened the night of Alison’s death but also to answer the elusive question: Who exactly was her sister? At seven, Claire had been barely old enough to know her: a beautiful, changeable, provocative girl of eighteen at a turbulent moment of identity formation.

As Claire doggedly shadows Clive, hoping to gain his trust, waiting for the slip that will reveal the truth, an unlikely attachment develops between them, two people whose lives were forever marked by the same tragedy.

I have become such a big fan of the thriller/mystery genre of books lately, so when I got a chance to review Saint X a couple months back, courtesy of Celadon Books, I was so excited because this was a book that was on my wishlist.

The story starts off in the 90's where we're introduced to a family on a family vacation at a tropical island, that doesn't end well. Their  18 year oldt daughter, Alison, goes missing and then eventually her body is found, washed up on the beach, by a couple in Faraway Cay. The police investigates everyone they can, including the boy that Alison was hanging out with a few times, but find no motive and eventually the case is left cold. Alison's younger sister, Claire is seven years old at the time and although Claire thought the world of her sister, following her every move and hanging on her every word, the night when she falls asleep Claire had no idea that would be the night that she would never see her sister alive again.

We're taken to the present, years later when Claire is an adult and she is living in New York City now. One day she steps into a cab and imagine her surprise when the cab driver is the same boy (man) who was questioned all those years ago for Alison's murder. This brings up so many questions and unresolved answers Claire has about who killed her sister during their family vacation and who her older sister really was.

This was a fantastic story! I absolutely loved the writing in this story and the topics the author wasn't afraid to talk about, racism, how people get treated when they have money compared to when they're less fortunate. We also get a good look into who Alison really was and why Claire is the way she is. 

What I loved about this story was how deep the author went when it came to Claire investigating the unsolved murder of her sister. Reading it felt as if I was doing the investigation as well with all the interviews, audio clips, diaries and autopsy reports and that ending is such a shocker. I am obsessed with this story and I encourage you all to pick this up as it is out in stores today! If you're looking for a great new mystery story to read, I highly recommend Saint X!

Disclosure: All opinions are my own. I received Saint X at no cost for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received. 


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