By Nduta Waweru
Elizabeth Fitch is a 16-year- old good girl that never goes against what her mother says even when it is too much for her. One night, after an argument with her mom, she decides to rebel against all her rules and go on a night out. With a fake ID and a friend from school, she gets into a club but an incident with a Russian mob changes her life forever.
As most Roberts books, the first few pages are usually dedicated to laying the groundwork for readers to understand the character and their motives. This is no different: we see Elizabeth’s run-ins with the law as she tries to keep safe from the mob, to reconcile with her mother and to make use of her computer skills to survive.
Years later, Elizabeth, now renamed Abigail, is in a quiet town of Bickford. And everything seems perfect, including her romance with the police chief, Brooks Gleason. But the unresolved issue with the mob seems to hover on her life and she is forced to do something about it.
What stands out with this story is the interconnection of different elements that make the reader relate to the character. Roberts does not drag the reader into violence without cause, which makes her a sensible thriller writer. The story also goes beyond the ordinary as it also gives a sneak peek into the life of the mob and its entanglement with the law.
If you are looking for a book with emotional entanglement between the main characters, this is not for you. Brooks and Abigail seem to get into a smooth relationship despite her nature, given everything she had gone through in her childhood and his suspicions about her.
But if you are interested in seeing an underdog overturn events against the mighty, The Witness is a fantastic easy read.