2014 Winner — Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award — Grand Prize and Mystery & Thriller Fiction Winner
It’s 1998, and for years the old First Bank of Cleveland has sat abandoned, perfectly preserved, its secrets only speculated on by the outside world.
Twenty years before, amid strange staff disappearances and allegations of fraud, panicked investors sold Cleveland’s largest bank in the middle of the night, locking out customers and employees, and thwarting a looming federal investigation. In the confusion that followed, the keys to the vault’s safe-deposit boxes were lost.
In the years since, Cleveland’s wealthy businessmen kept the truth buried in the abandoned high-rise. The ransacked offices and forgotten safe-deposit boxes remain locked in time, until young engineer Iris Latch stumbles upon them during a renovation survey. What begins as a welcome break from her cubicle becomes an obsession as Iris unravels the bank’s sordid past. With each haunting revelation, Iris follows the looming shadow of the past deeper into the vault—and soon realizes that the key to the mystery comes at an astonishing price.
I know this story for some time but I only read it now because suddenly I read that this story won Amazon breakthrough award. And amazingly it have 7.000-an reviews. Wonder why I don't catch that information before. So, naturally it makes me curious to read the story. Especially since it was free with prime reading.This story use 2 different timeline which is the present (1998) and the past (1978) to tell the story and what's happening. Because of that, there are 2 main characters which is Beatrice (1978) and Iris (1998). In this story they work at the same building but with different profession. They are poor girl that stuck with job they hate simply because they need money. Usually I don't like snooping girl but in this story I feel sorry for them. The story moving back and forth between 2 timelines with some characters appear in both of them since it was only 20 years in part. The story itself is not too heavy and also not too light. It gives certain vibes and enough mystery to make you keep reading. The story moving forward in constant pace. The characters itself are simple because you are not supposed to care about them. The authors make the characters quite lively despite not focusing on them. The story itself was quite good and not ordinary.
Despite everything that I like about this story, it certainly could have been better. Since the story was good, I expect the ending to be much better because with mystery genre, the climax would be at the end. But no. I don't mean it doesn't solve the problem. It certainly is. You know who is the bad guy and what is happening. What I mean is the story lack certain wow factor that make it memorable. Anyway, cannot wait to read another story from Ms. Pulley
My ratings : 4.5 of 5