The Other Daughter: A Novel

The Other Daughter: A Novel

Audiobook(CD - Unabridged)

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What you don't know can kill you.

In Texas a serial killer is executed, taking to his grave the identity of his only child.

In Boston a nine-year-old girl is abandoned in a hospital, then adopted by a wealthy young couple.

Twenty years later, Melanie Stokes still considers herself lucky. Until...

Until the terrifying visions begin.

Until a has-been reporter starts investigating her past.

Until the first note arrives saying YOU GET WHAT YOU DESERVE.

Melanie had lost all memory of her life before the adoption, and now someone wants to give it back. Even if it includes the darkest nightmare the Stokes family ever faced: the murder of their first daughter in Texas. As Melanie pursues every lead, chases every shadow in the search for her real identity, two seemingly unrelated events from twenty years ago will come together in a dangerous explosion of truth. And with her very life at stake, Melanie will fear that the family she loves the most may be the people she should trust the least.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781721333844
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
Publication date: 01/15/2019
Edition description: Unabridged
Sales rank: 631,992
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 6.50(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Lisa Gardner is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of twenty novels, including Look for Me, Right Behind You, Find Her, Crash & Burn, Fear Nothing, Touch & Go, Catch Me, and The Neighbor, which won the International Thriller of the Year Award. She lives with her family in New England.

Read an Excerpt

She was late, she was late, oh, God, she was so late!

Melanie Stokes came bounding up the stairs, then made the hard left turn down the hall, her long blond hair whipping around her face. Twenty minutes and counting. She hadn't even thought about what she was going to wear. Damn.

She tore into her room with her sweatshirt half pulled over her head. A strategic kick sent the heavy mahogany door slamming shut behind her as she shed the first layer of clothes. She toed off her tennis shoes and sent them sailing beneath the pine bureau that swallowed nearly a quarter of her bedroom. A lot of things came to rest beneath the battered dresser. One of these days she meant to clean it out. But not tonight.

Melanie hastily shimmied out of her ripped-up jeans, tossed her T-shirt onto the sleigh bed, and hurried to the closet. The wide plank floorboards felt cool against her toes, making her do a little cha-cha-cha along the way.

"Come on," she muttered, ripping back the silk curtain. "Ten years of compulsive shopping crammed into one five-by-five space. How hard can it be to locate a cocktail dress?"

To judge by the mess, pretty hard. Melanie grimaced, then waded in fatalistically. Somewhere in there were a few decent dresses.

At the age of twenty-nine, Melanie Stokes was petite, capable, and a born diplomat. She'd been abandoned as a child at City General Hospital with no memory of where she came from, but that had been a long time ago and she didn't think of those days much. She had an adoptive father whom she respected, an adoptive mother whom she loved, an older brother whom she worshiped, and an indulgent godfather whom she adored. Until recently shehad considered her family to be very close. They were not just another rich family, they were a tight-knit family. She kept telling herself they would be like that again soon.

Melanie had graduated from Wellesley six years earlier with her family serving as an enthusiastic cheering section. She'd returned home right afterward to help her mother through one of her "spells," and somehow it had seemed easiest for everyone if she stayed. Now she was a professional event organizer. Mostly she did charity functions. Huge black-tie affairs that made the social elite feel social and elite while simultaneously milking them for significant sums of money. Lots of details, lots of planning, lots of work. Melanie always pulled them off. Seamless, social columnists liked to rave about the events, relaxed yet elegant. Not to mention profitable.

Then there were the nights like tonight. Tonight was the seventh annual Donate-A-Classic for Literacy reception, held right there in her parents' house, and, apparently, cursed.

The caterer hadn't been able to get enough ice. The parking valets had called in sick, the Boston Globe had printed the wrong time, and Senator Kennedy was home with a stomach virus, taking with him half the press corps. Thirty minutes ago Melanie had gotten so frustrated, tears had stung her eyes. Completely unlike her.

But then, she was agitated tonight for reasons that had nothing to do with the reception. She was agitated, and being Melanie, she was dealing with it by keeping busy.

Melanie was very good at keeping busy. Almost as good as her father.

Fifteen minutes and counting. Damn. Melanie found her favorite gold-fringed flapper's dress. Encouraged, she began digging for gold pumps.

During the first few months of Melanie's adoption, the Stokeses had been so excited about their new daughter, they'd lavished her with every gift they could imagine. The second floor master bedroom suite, complete with rose silk wall hangings and a gold-trimmed bathroom, where she needed a stool just to catch her reflection in the genuine Louis IV mirror, was hers. The closet was the size of a small apartment, and it had been filled with every dress, hat, and, yes, gloves ever made by Laura Ashley. All that in addition to two parents, one brother, and one godfather who were shadowing every move she made, handing her food before she could think to hunger, bringing her games before she could think to be bored, and offering her blankets before she could think to shiver.

It had been a little weird.

Melanie had gone along at first. She'd been eager to please, wanting to be happy as badly as they wanted to make her happy. It seemed to her that if people as golden and beautiful and rich as the Stokeses were willing to give her a home and have her as a daughter, she could darn well learn to be their daughter. So she'd dressed each morning in flounces of lace and patiently let her new mom cajole her straight hair into sausage curls. She'd listened gravely to her new father's dramatic stories of snatching cardiac patients from the clutches of death and her godfather's tales of faraway places where men wore skirts and women grew hair in their armpits. She spent long afternoons sitting quietly with her new brother, memorizing his tight features and troubled eyes while he swore to her again and again that he would be the perfect older brother for her, he would.

Everything was perfect. Too perfect. Melanie stopped being able to sleep at night. Instead, she would find herself tiptoeing downstairs at two a.m. to stand in front of a painting of another golden little girl. Four-year-old Meagan Stokes, who wore flounces of lace and sausage-curled hair. Four-year-old Meagan Stokes, who'd been the Stokeses' first daughter before some monster had kidnapped her and cut off her head. Four-year-old Meagan Stokes, the real daughter the Stokeses had loved and adored long before Melanie arrived.

Harper would come home from emergency surgeries and carry her back to bed. Brian grew adept at hearing the sound of her footsteps and would patiently lead her back to her bedroom. But still she'd come back down, obsessed by the painting of that gorgeous little girl whom even a nine-year-old girl could realize she was meant to replace.

Jamie O'Donnell finally intervened. Oh, for God's sake, he declared. Melanie was Melanie. A flesh-and-blood girl, not a porcelain doll to be used for dress-up games. Let her pick her own clothes and her own room and her own style before the therapy bills grew out of control.

That piece of advice probably saved them all. Melanie left the master bedroom suite for a sunny third-story bedroom across from Brian's room. Melanie liked the bay windows and low, slanted ceilings, and the fact that the room could never be mistaken for, say, a hospital room.

And she discovered, during a clothing drive at school, that she liked hand-me-downs best. They were so soft and comfortable, and if you did spill or rip something, no one would notice. She became Goodwill's best customer for years. Then came the trips to garage sales for furniture. She liked things banged up, scarred. Things that came with a past, she realized when she was older. Things that came with the history she didn't have.

Her godfather was amused by her taste, her father aghast, but her new family remained supportive. They kept loving her. They grew whole.

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Other Daughter 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1769 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is my first book that I have read by Lisa Gardner. It was one of those books you can't put down. Otherwise you go through out the day wondering what is going to happen next or who actually did what. It took me 2 days to read it. READ IT!!!! Great book
yogagirlMK More than 1 year ago
Good read keep me guessing did not want to put down. The only reason I did not rate it more it had some useless sexual content that was not necessary to the plot, that part read like a romance novel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Provides a thought provoking and thoroughly entertaining experience. This is the best nookbook out there, along with The Blue Light of Portland I just completed.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Excellent style of writing. This book keeps the readers interest all the way to the shocking end! A must have for all suspense lovers!
Guest More than 1 year ago
what a wonderful book. it keep me going. kelly/nj
theReader278 More than 1 year ago
I loved reading this book! It was thrilling, through provoking and it has a story that keeps you entertained for hours.
Moeluna5 More than 1 year ago
I can see this is where Gardner was still transitioning from romantic novels to thrillers. Her characters were not likable, the plot was just okay. I love all her other books and characters but was very disappointed with this one. I recommend to skip this book if you are reading them in order. You will not be missing anything.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was so hard to put down. I finished it so quickly and found it to be very suspenseful and well written.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is my first book from Lisa Gardner and I just loved it! I would recommended to anyone who like thrilling suspense!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
...and completely horrible. The writing is predictable and characters are incredibly flat. I feel silly that I wasted my time ready this book. Save your money.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the best books I've read in a while. It twists and turns so many times, you never know what to expect in the end. Definitely recommended!
Ericasj22 More than 1 year ago
(No spoilers, I promise!) This 357 page book could have been all that it was 157 pages shorter! I felt like we kept going over the same ground over and over again! We're made to believe that Digger was this great reporter, albeit with no scrupals, but this whole drama couldve been saved if he asked one SIMPLE question!!! Not to mention the love scenes were SUPER corny. I found myself skimming thru them as quickly as possible just to get it over with (and it seems like the characters felt the same way). Oh gosh, I was soooo frustrated at the end, I literally wanted to throw the book down (except I was reading it on my nook and I wasnt about to throw that! ) Apparently this author has writteen other books that are better...spend your money on one of those, not this one!
MistyBlake More than 1 year ago
You have no idea where this novel is going- it's compelling from start to finish. And a great adult read, not like those young-adult books that I try to get into but just don't hit home.
blu4vr More than 1 year ago
Stilted writing, cringeworthy love scenes, cardboard characters. . . frankly, I'm not sure why I slogged through to the end. The plot had its twists and turns, but most of them were arbitrary and unbelievable. This is thriller-by-numbers and maybe a decent airplane read, so long as you don't think your seatmate will mind a few sighs of impatience, eye rolls, and some squirming. This was my first Lisa Gardner; it will be my last.
Alice Langbehn More than 1 year ago
I can't believe this was on anyone's best seller list. This story was so disjointed-overly detailed in some parts and then characters and key story elements coming from out of nowhere. This reminds me of the type of writing a freshman in highschool might produce. The story concept itself was decent ,but poorly written and very frustrating to read. It was as though the writer tried to tell you everything at once- like a little kid backtracking on a story to get out of a jam- with some bodice ripper type sex scenes thrown in. I couldn't fathom how something like this could possibly have been published.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Alexis Bowers More than 1 year ago
Great book! I couldnt put it down! Everytime i thought i knew the ending...the author would trick me and put a chilling twist to it! It is a great mystery! For sure should read!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
this novel is the first i have read of lisa gardner's and as a 16 year old female i thought it was ABSOLUTELY BRILLIANT!!!it was absolute chance that i pulled it out of my mum's book shelf but boy i am so glad that i did because this was a superb novel, and i have yet to read her other novels. great unexpected twists that were so thrilling and as a result i chose this book to write for my english RPR. definetely recommended to any age group 15 and over.
Guest More than 1 year ago
_The Other Daughter_ by Lisa Gardner is about a girl who learns the truth about her parents the hard way. The author has a great way of keeping you on your toes. If you like a book filled with suspense than go by this book today!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. I read it in 4 days. I could not put it down. Great book from the start to the finish.
johngr More than 1 year ago
Compelling, truly a riveting write......,
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book by Lisa! Had me guessing all the way to the end! Will definitely be reading more books by her.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
First book that I have read by this author, and was not dissapointed! I liked the suspense!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this book