When five-year old Shelley Robins vanishes from her home in the middle of the night, her mother is charged with murder and taken to prison. Six years later, when Shelley reappears unharmed, the whole town must navigate the strange behavior of the young girl, the wrongful imprisonment of a mother, and the fear that the kidnapper is striking again. Shelley's devoted older sister, Sasha, determines to do whatever it takes to keep Shelley safe. The Uncaging is a story of the trauma we hide, the ways we cope, and the lengths we go to protect our family.
The Sexy Nerd ‘Revue’
What a new twist on an old subject. The reader is given a ring-size seat into the arena of deep dark secrets with shady characters and unbelievable plotting. We begin following the journey of three sisters, Sasha, Casey and Shelley. Shelly is the five-year old who, unfortunately, has to be raised by a mother who has had her fair share of bad men and poor decisions. Her worse decision is the all mighty bottle. Mallory can’t seem to get enough of the joy juice. Depending on how much she’s drank on any given day, determines her crazy outbursts and violent tendencies toward her little girl.
Sasha luckily grew up and got away from her mother, but not so much that she wasn’t around to see how she was treating her baby sister. Sasha was trying to live her life, but was ultimately thrown into the mothering role because Mallory was just too irresponsible to take on such a daunting task. Most of the time, Sasha was right there for Shelley, as she was on the fateful night that changed the course of every characters’ lives in this story.
There wasn’t anyone who regretted bad decisions more than Sasha on this night. She was there for Shelley to watch over her and make sure she got to bed and had nice dreams. All the while, Mallory was in a blackout and couldn’t tell you her name, let alone remember she had a five-year old to watch after. Sasha the ever enabler, got her mother to be somewhat ok by putting her to bed, and quietly walked down the hall to make sure Shelley was doing alright. And that was the last time Sasha saw her sister.
Every time she thought about Shelley and her last time seeing her made her heart ache. Why didn’t she take her sister and leave the town of Grady for good? Why did she think her mother was capable of overseeing little Shelley? That’s all Sasha did was live with the guilt that had she taken her sister that night, perhaps their lives would have turned out different. The next morning, Sasha gets a frantic call from her alcoholic mother advising that Shelley was gone and there was blood everywhere, including her hands. Sasha rushes to her mother’s aid only to scratch her head of the crime scene as well. None of it made any sense. How could Mallory not know who took her daughter, and why was their blood on her hands? Did she kill her daughter and not remember?
And that, folks, is where the story begins to bend and turn. There were quite a few red herrings in the story, but I continually followed the clues closely to determine exactly what was going on in this story, and I figured it out, but it didn’t take away anything from the story line. This was truly a good book. What the reader will soon come away with is sinister acts of some and the unraveling of others. There will be a few characters who will definitely become uncaged and unhinged at the same time. Jo did an exceptional job in throwing the reader off, but if you’re a veteran to reading, a few scenarios will begin to unfold in your mind’s eye, and you’ll easily put two and two together.
However, having said that, Jo managed to throw a lot at the reader to keep you wondering if you were following the journeys on the correct path. A few times I was thrown way off, and I love when an author can do that to me. What an incredible story with plenty of twists and turns. I really loved this book.
The Sexy Nerd gives The Uncaging five cooped up stars. It was fun getting to know Sasha and the rest of the characters as they tried to figure out what happened to five-year old Shelley. What you’ll find are quite a few surprises. I’ve never read anything by this author before, but I must say I’m a fan. This book was recommended to me by Bookbub, which is why I always tell my avid readers you need to sign up and get book selections in your email daily. You never know the rare jewels you’ll find in a book. That’s how I stumbled across this one. Until next time, Nerds, open a book and get mind blown. It’s the best high ever!