Book Review

The Gift

The GiftThe Gift
Author: Alison Gaylin
Series: Hush Collection #5
Publisher: Amazon Original Stories
First Published: July 30, 2020
Genres: Mystery, Paranormal, Thriller
Pages: 28
Format: eBook
Source: Prime Reading


What’s a desperate mother to do when her child suddenly disappears? Anything it takes to keep the family together in USA Today bestselling author Alison Gaylin’s short story with a sting.

It’s dreaded news for actress Lyla McCord and her husband, Nolan. Their eight-year-old daughter has vanished. To find her, Nolan reaches out to a psychic gifted with uncanny visions about the lost girl. But Lyla thinks she sees right through him. Is he a con artist or the real thing? Either way, he might be telling the truth. And that’s too frightening for Lyla to bear.

Also in this series: Snowflakes, Treasure, Slow Burner

My Thoughts

I won’t mince words with this one—I hated this story, flat out hated it. I like stories with flawed or even awful main characters, and I’ve always tended to love villains in many movies and stories, none of that bothers me. Lyla, the main character in this story, is detestable, and not even because of her actions in the story, she was painful to even read about.

“Please bring her back. Please don’t make me live without her.”

She is a conceited and selfish narrator that cares about the disappearance of her daughter because she is hers, like a piece of property. Every single detail of her wealth is described and Lyla just oozes disgusting celebrity drama. Next to nothing happens in this story other than the revelation that the main character is a vapid and greedy person that views the people around her as worthless.

I feel that this story is only effective if it manages to surprise the reader in some way. Unfortunately for me, I had everything figured out before the psychic is even mentioned. There is little to no real characterization in this story and it is too short to have much of a plot. I have no doubt that this author has some writing chops, just not in this short form.

Warnings: violence

About Alison Gaylin

USA Today and International Best-selling author Alison Gaylin has been nominated for the Edgar four times. Most recently, her thriller IF I DIE TONIGHT, won the award in the category Best Paperback Original.

Her critically acclaimed suspense novels have been published in such countries as the U.K., France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Japan and Romania.

She has won the Shamus and RT Reviewers Choice Awards for her books, and has been nominated for the ITW Thriller, Anthony and Strand Book Awards. Her books have been on the bestseller lists in the US, Germany and Belgium.


I’m a Filipino American blogger, historian, and lazy writer. I enjoy books, video games, anime/manga, and smoking hookah.

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