Read Safe Keeping by Barbara Taylor Sissel Online


At the heart of every crime, there's a family.My son is a murderer.... So begins this chilling and emotionally charged mystery from highly acclaimed author Barbara Taylor Sissel. Emily Lebay had always thought of her family as ordinary. Sure, they've endured their share of problems, even a time of great trouble; what family hasn't? But when a woman's body turns up in the dAt the heart of every crime, there's a family.My son is a murderer.... So begins this chilling and emotionally charged mystery from highly acclaimed author Barbara Taylor Sissel. Emily Lebay had always thought of her family as ordinary. Sure, they've endured their share of problems, even a time of great trouble; what family hasn't? But when a woman's body turns up in the dense woods near their home, and Emily's grown son Tucker is accused of murder, Emily is forced to confront the unfathomable, and everything she believed about her life is called into question.This isn't the first time Tucker has been targeted by the police; a year ago he was a person of interest when another woman was found dead in the same stretch of woods. Still, neither Emily nor her daughter, Lissa, can reconcile their Tucker with these brutal crimes. Terrified, convinced there's been a tragic mistake, Emily and Lissa set out to learn the truth about Tucker, once and for all. And while his life hangs in the balance, what they discover proves far more shocking than their darkest fears."Past secrets contribute to present-day angst in this solid suspense novel, and the even pacing keeps the reader’s interest until the captivating conclusion." Publisher's Weekly“...impressive writing and affecting subject matter.” Kirkus Reviews...

Title : Safe Keeping
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780778316169
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 320 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Safe Keeping Reviews

  • Susan
    2019-02-16 14:29

    Do You Ever Really Know Someone??SAFE KEEPING is by one of my new go to authors, Barbara Taylor Sissel. This is the story of the Lebay family. Tucker and Lissa are brother and sister. Their parents are Roy and Emily. Tucker has been in trouble with the police before. Now it seems he is in trouble again. The police have found a dead woman on the same stretch of the highway where they found one a year before. A year ago, Tucker was questioned as a person of interest in the police departments investigation as he was the last person to see the woman alive.I really loved this book and read it rather quickly. Barbara pulls you right in from the first page and never lets you go. The way she ends the book will blow you away. I couldn't stop flipping the pages and stayed up way too late two nights because I had to know how SAFE KEEPING was going to end. What this family goes through will be pulling at your heart strings in no time.I,am leaving a full review on

  • Cheryl
    2019-01-31 22:38

    I picked up a copy of this book because it falls in the genre that I like. However it did not intrigue me. I got to page 56 and put the book down. I came back to a long while later and started reading it again as I was determined to read the book. Sadly though I only got a few more pages into the book and finally gave up on it. None of the characters or storyline were drawing me in and keeping my interest. Plus, I really did not like the way that they talked. Such a bummer as I thought this book would be good. Oh well. On to the next book.

  • Pauline Tilbe
    2019-02-10 16:36

    The characters drew me in from the first few pages. There was quickly a sense of hidden stories and conflict that was weaved amongst the family members. Tucker couldn't possibly be capable of murder and yet everything points to yes, he is. Roy's history makes him an imposing character but when needed, Emily stands her ground to put her family back together. The portrayal of Roy's PTSD was something I haven't seen written so well in other stories. This is a page turner for sure and kept me up past my bedtime just to learn the conclusion.

  • Deanna
    2019-02-06 22:39

    Interesting premise, but I never felt any connection to the characters. The characters themselves seemed to be lacking in emotion a bit...or at least, their emotions didn't translate well to the pages (more "telling" than "showing" was the case here, I think).

  • Nenette
    2019-01-23 20:26

    Right after I finished the book, a question came to mind: what could be worse, death or incarceration? We're talking about either one happening to one's child. Both are unthinkable, unimaginable. Denial from the family is a natural reaction, as the mind cannot grapple with the idea of a kin, one of their own being capable of an evil act like murder.I had hoped that the killer was someone else; maybe it was the mother in me. Yet, when the truth was exposed, it's true what's said that one can only move forward, move up. Easier said than done, because it takes a lot of self-coaxing to not wallow in the pits of despair, sadness, and guilt.Ms. Sissel once again delivered. No better fiction than one that may on the surface appear so ordinary, yet full of truths on the possible twists and turns a life can take.

  • Elizabeth
    2019-02-16 22:26

    I don't believe I've ever read a book quite like "Safe Keeping." It was extremely emotional and the plot held my interest throughout. I just couldn't believe that Tucker was a murderer (not a spoiler because it's in the synopsis). I still don't believe it. This family broke my heart. Emily, the mom, was such a tragic figure. She loves and supports her family so much that she's constantly hurting - and Lissa is the same way. She believes in Tucker no matter what. Even when everything is falling apart, these two women keep trying to hold the family together. One succeeds and one fails.This story will fill your heart with sadness, then renewal. Highly recommended.

  • Michelle
    2019-02-06 21:33

    I think something must be wrong with me because I keep looking for more fucked up twists and even darker depravity. This one was just ok.

  • Deborah Carr
    2019-02-08 15:55

    2.5 stars. This book was just OK. I felt like there was just too much going on; Tucker being charged with murder, Roy's PTSD, Emily's many, many issues, and Lissa/Evan's baby situation. This book just tried too hard and didn't deliver. One of my biggest issues is that central to everyone's story was Tucker, and we learned the least about him. Very disappointing.

  • Lori
    2019-02-20 14:35

    Really enjoyed reading this book. It was a page-turner, and the characters were relatable and believable.

  • Ashley
    2019-01-24 17:28

    When another missing woman is found murdered it once again casts a dark shadow over the Lebay family. How could it not? Jessica was murdered in the same manner and found in same location as Miranda whose body was found only a year earlier. Jessica, like Miranda, had a close association with Tucker Lebay and they had fought on the night she went missing. Miranda’s murder had never been solved and now Tucker once again is considered a “person of interest.” He, of course, proclaims his innocence but his family has their doubts. Tucker has always been in trouble, always been a little “different” and emotionally detached, can’t hold a job and runs with the wrong people. Is Tucker innocent? Can his family ever trust him? Will this broken family ever mend? These questions form the foundation for Barbara Taylor Sissel’s “Safe Keeping.” The story is thought-provoking and the emotional turmoil of the family as they struggle to believe in Tucker despite mounting evidence. They also struggle with determining their own responsibility in Tucker becoming the man that he is and who finds himself a suspected murderer. Were there warning signs? Could they have prevented this? Is he really even guilty? The questions felt endless and in the end it all wraps up neatly although readers still may not feel satisfied. It’s hard to share too much without spoiling the story.While I enjoyed the story, especially once Emily (mother) and Lissa (sister) began to unravel the shocking truth about Tucker there were certain aspects of the book that I struggled with while reading. I had little issue with the story itself as it indeed a great journey but there are aspects of Sissel’s writing style that caused me to cringe on more than on occasion. She has an apparent love for the use simile as they are constant throughout the book and do not always create a pleasant image (e.g.: “as pale as a milky eye). At times I couldn’t understand if she was trying to create a negative image or if it was simply poor choice of imagery. I also have a personal disdain for the phrase ”in my (his/her) mind’s eye” which Sissel also uses frequently. The phrase originated in Shakespeare and feels sorely out of place in a contemporary fiction novel. Do you share my disdain for poor similes and “mind’s eye” phrases? If so, there will be moments in this book that make you cringe. If you don’t and you’re all about the story then pick it up and give it a read. It’s a good book and the truth about Tucker is worth discovering.Review by Ashley LaMarClosed the Cover

  • Carla
    2019-01-26 14:54

    ****** This is a First Reads, Thank You Goodreads *****I think 2 1/2 stars would be more accurate in my rating to be fair. The story surrounds a family in Texas; Emily, the matriarch, who has her own pains and regrets in life as she blindly carries and sweeps her family's clean or bakes her way in a false stepford smile; Roy, the patriarch, wounded in war, came back with ptsd, did damage to his family in more ways than one, the night terrors sometimes keep in the day, questions was it all worth the pain; Emily, the daughter, the oldest, the one who has kept things running, married right, keeps the company going along with her husband, blindly loyal; Evan, Emily's husband, the son that never was, the silent strength; Tucker, the son, the lost child, the one who in one of his father's moments became an enemy and never grew out of it, and the one who is now the suspect in a murder - again.Can lightning strike twice and it still be a mistake? Tucker is the suspect again in a murder of woman, another one he knew, another one found where the last one was, in the same fashion of death. Why does this keep happening? Can't people see what the rest of the family can? That he is good, that he is kind, that he has emotional problems that make him wonder off for days, but he is also the type of person the would spend his paycheck on saving a dog that was run over on the side of the road that he found. This is where the nightmare only begins for the Lebay Family, with their family history with each other and with the small town secrets that slowly creep up there are a bit of twists and turns.Why only 2 1/2 stars - I didn't connect with any of the characters. I struggled to keep reading and finish the book, which thankfully I did, because finally 250 pages in is when the action began and it got exciting - sadly that left only 50 pages to wrap it up, which was plenty. There was a disconnect that not only I felt with the characters, but they had with each other, everything seemed very surface - a facade of love, of care, of a marriage, of a relationship with each other, I don't know if that was the author's intent.

  • Domonique
    2019-01-26 20:33

    I absolutely loved this book! It was so good I just had to keep reading it, I finished it in just a few days. I have to say, the story really did tug at my heart strings, how one simple act so long ago could have such a huge impact on a family and change them in so many ways. Obviously, when the Dad got back from the war and did what he did to his son( I won't reveal to much because I don't want to give it away), that entire event scarred the son, Tucker, in a way that no one could have imagined. I just couldn't believe that after everything, he turned out to be a completely different person who seemed to have no conscience or remorse at all.I think it was so unexpected for me because I didn't see it coming, I really did think he was one of the good guys. The way that the mother and sister both stood up for him and coddled him in my opinion, it was a bit annoying. Especially when the sister, Lissa, found out she was pregnant and she practically put her brother's well being and life before that of her child, that I just couldn't understand. And it frustrated me to no end because I wanted to smack her and tell her to snap out of it. But I think that all these feelings I experienced: joy, amazement, frustration, surprise, all of these elements helped to keep me interested and find out how was everything was going to end. And that's what makes a story great.

  • Patty
    2019-02-05 21:38

    Safe KeepingByBarbara Taylor SisselMy " in a nutshell" summary...Murders of women plague a family. Tucker...the troubled accused of these he guilty or misunderstood? Hmmm...My thoughts after reading this book...This was a mystery surrounding a very troubled family. Lissa and and her brother Tucker were the interesting characters for me. Tucker...troubled...spoiled...not responsible at all...has been accused twice of murder. Of course he swears he is innocent...and it seems as though he is. He has a reason for every action he takes...his sister and his mother fiercely protect him. His father thinks that Emily...his mother...protects him too much...and Tucker's messed up life is the result...Final thoughts...This book had a nice amount of family drama and my guess about who murdered these women was totally wrong. I think that about halfway through I started feeling as though I really wanted to shake both Emily and Lissa especially when they bailed Tucker out of jail. This family seemed prone to make some really bad decisions and the ending really proved it. I actually didn't like the all. this a good mystery? Will it keep you on your toes? Will the pages fly by? times it will.

  • Sharon Huether
    2019-02-20 17:32

    Safe Keeping Barbara Taylor Sissel... I won this book through Goodreads. A family in crisis. The father, a returning Vet from Nam had constant terrors; they reflected on his son. The son accused of murder. His sister wanting to see him innocent at all costs. The parents finding proof of his guilt. In his last act of kindness the father took the bullet meant for the son. There were many twists and turns in this story. The family loved their son, but knew he had to pay for his crimes. They were able to move on, remembering the good times.

  • Natalie
    2019-01-20 15:26

    lost interest after 30 pages or so. I could not even keep the characters straight in my mind. sorry, but I do not know how this got the reviews it did.

  • Eileen
    2019-01-25 18:35

    It was a quick read, but kinda dull. And I was kinda hoping Lissa would get an abortion cause it annoyed me that her husband thought he could take her to court to prevent her from having one.

  • Alicia
    2019-02-08 20:52

    Emotionally moving "Safe Keeping" by Barbara Taylor SisselWhat happens when you think your son may have murdered two women, yet at the same time you are almost convinced he could not have done it. Are you making justifications that he is always pestered by the cops, he has lied in the past, but not always, yes he has struggled at everything he has tried to do and just appears to have little or no ability to really succeed. Is this a result of how he was born? How he was raised? A traumatic event that happened to him when he was four? All of those things? "Safe Keeping," is about one family who is going through this exact struggle. Their son is different from others. He always has been since he was about four. But is that a result of a traumatic event he suffered that a psychiatrist said he had recovered from? Or did the effects of that event continue to carry over to continual PTSD that led to his multiple issues as many others have argued? His father says his mother was too soft and easy on him. His father said he tried to be tougher to provide more guidance and discipline. In the end, both parents realize maybe communicating as a family might have been the best way. But who really knows what role nature and nurture play in ones development. What time does igenetics play? His sister never really struggled with much. She feels she knows her brother better than either of her parents and that there is no way her brother committed these crimes. Yet she also says ther is much she doesn't know about him either. But as the family members do their own soul searching; his sister some of her own searching to clear him lead to family issues that were never fully discussed or addressed, individual fears are brought forth, and speaking to outsiders often brings about more questions than answers. As the LeBay family goes through the arrest of their son of the murder of two women and the family tries to prove him innocent or accept his fate, more situations arise that bring about both doubt and the potential of guilt. In this twisting turning novel that starts out with the first sentence, "my son is a murderer," the reader is engaged from that point on and the author carries them through until the end. Rating: 4.7⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Jool
    2019-02-07 20:44

    An interesting plot - what would you do if one of your family members was accused of not one but two murders - or even more? 34 year old Tucker is that person who has been accused. His mother and his sister and her husband stand behind him 100 percent. The only thing his father says, a Vietnam veteran who lost a leg in the war and struggles with PTSD - doesn't care what happens to Tucker, except that he "get the hell out of the house". This is something I have wondered about; what if a beloved, loving family member was senselessly accused of murder, and there was nothing you could find to do to help them? While some of the scenes are improbable - his sister does her own interviews of his friends and whereabouts, behind the police' backs no less - and is gathering strategies for his defense. This is an intriguing tale about the lengths a family would go to in order to save a member of their family who is wrongly accused.

  • Mrs
    2019-02-16 17:50

    Awesome book! I absolutely LOVED it. I had kind of a hard time getting into it at first, but once I hit about chapter 3, I was hooked.

  • Sheila
    2019-02-07 19:40

    A family must deal with their son/brother being accused of murder.Did he really do it?

  • Andrea Corley
    2019-01-22 14:26

    For a more in depth review, please visit my blog, Chorley Chronicals!I have really come to love the writing of Barbara Taylor Sissel, and must say that Evidence of Life was one of my favorite books that I've read, so when I saw that she had a new book coming out, I did everything I could to find out how I could get my hands on a copy of Safe Keeping. I knew that Barbara Taylor Sissel was in with one of my Goodreads groups, Sisterhood of the Traveling Books, so I checked there, and sure enough, she had Safe Keeping circulating, so I added myself to the list, and boy was I ever excited!Who wouldn't want to read this book after reading such an amazing Synopsis? And after reading the book, I can't say that the Synopsis has let me down. I have found that with many books, that the story just doesn't quite live up to the Synopsis, and that in fact, the Synopsis is the best part of the book, however, that is so not the case with Safe Keeping. The story was expertly and emotionally written, making the reader feel what the other side of a murder investigation might feel like! It dives into the emotions that the family of the accused feel! How, as an accused murderer's mother or sister, might you feel? Would you stand by your son's/brother's side? Would you give everything that you had to prove his innocence? Would you believe in his innocence with all of your being? I felt a variety of emotions while reading this book.I must say that Sissel really threw me off with this story! I thought that I had figured out what was going to happen, just to find out that I was totally wrong. There was quite a surprise ending and left me with my mouth hanging wide open! I was pulled in from the very first few words, and Sissel never let go until the last word on the last page! I found it to be a quick and easy read, however, very emotional throughout. It certainly was a page turner, and I enjoyed each and every page this story contained!The characters were all such fierce characters, that believed in what they believed in, and were all willing to sacrifice anything for that belief. What this family goes through will leave you reeling for days and certainly will tug at all of your heart strings.Overall, I had very high expectations for this book after reading Evidence of Life and I must say that I wasn't even in the slightest bit, let down after reading Safe Keeping. I think that Barbara Taylor Sissel has an amazing talent, and feel so honored that I can be one of her followers and have the opportunity to read her works of art! I enjoyed every minute of reading this book! As with her previous book, I found Sissel leaving me thinking of what I would do in the same situation, which is something that I really love about a book! I love the thought that goes along with these types of stories! I am endlessly amazed by Sissel's writing and can't wait to see what else she comes up with!

  • Cheryl
    2019-01-29 15:43

    Safe Keeping by Barbara Taylor SisselPublished by Harlequin MIRAPublication Date: March 25, 2014ISBN-10: 0778316165ISBN-12: 978-0778316169Number of Pages: 320Review Copy from: Author/HarlequinEdition: TPBMy Rating: 5Synopsis (via GR):My son is a murderer.... So begins this chilling and emotionally charged mystery from highly acclaimed author Barbara Taylor Sissel. Emily Lebay had always thought of her family as ordinary. Sure, they've endured their share of problems, even a time of great trouble; what family hasn't? But when a woman's body turns up in the dense woods near their home, and Emily's grown son Tucker is accused of murder, Emily is forced to confront the unfathomable, and everything she believed about her life is called into question.This isn't the first time Tucker has been targeted by the police; a year ago he was a person of interest when another woman was found dead in the same stretch of woods. Still, neither Emily nor her daughter, Lissa, can reconcile their Tucker with these brutal crimes. Terrified, convinced there's been a tragic mistake, Emily and Lissa set out to learn the truth about Tucker, once and for all. And while his life hangs in the balance, what they discover proves far more shocking than their darkest fears."Past secrets contribute to present-day angst in this solid suspense novel, and the even pacing keeps the reader’s interest until the captivating conclusion." Publisher's Weekly“...impressive writing and affecting subject matter.” Kirkus Reviews(less)My Thoughts and Opinion:WOW!!! I need to emphasize that WOW!Barbara Taylor Sissel went on my "authors to read list" after reading her novel THE NINTH STEP. And she stayed that after I finished reading THE VOLUNTEER and EVIDENCE OF LIFE. Now with this latest book, SAFE KEEPING, she has a permanent spot on that list.The LeBay family is once again dealing with a heart wrenching and "could it be" family crisis, son and brother, Tucker, is being accused of murder. Not Tucker! Yes he has had some difficulty in life, but murder? Yes, the family has some secrets, but murder? There are more likely suspects other than Tucker. With unconditional love, the family will prove his innocence. Or can they?I know when I start to read a Barbara Taylor Sissel book, the writing is going to be impeccable, the characters life like and relatable, the suspense incredible. And she didn't disappoint with this novel. She has an amazing talent of weaving a tale full of chapter cliff hangers, possible suspects, roller coaster action that is difficult to put down and comes to a climax with a "never saw coming" ending. Heart pounding!! An intense read! I highly recommend!!! (I received a copy of this book from Author/Harlequin in exchange for my honest opinion)

  • Home. Love. Books.
    2019-02-15 14:28

    To read this review and others like it check out my site at This book opens up very powerful, with a mother realizing there is a real chance her son is a murderer. That's got to be a really hard thing for a parent to consider, and you can tell that is something the whole family has a hard time considering. I was actually a little bit surprised at how much I enjoyed this book, it reminded me of one of those slow building crime/suspense movies, the book was just like that, a slow build the entire way through, and I really liked it. So the whole book you are really wondering, is Emily right, did her son kill these women? But then again Emily isn't even sure that Tucker, her son killed them, in fact she is steadfast in her conviction that it just isn't possible that he baby could do something like that. His sister Lissa is just as sure that her brother couldn't have done the things that the media and the police believe he did. The story is told from two different POVs the women of the family, Emily and Lissa. And both of them are just so torn up over what is happening but they believe in their son. These women keep uncovering different possible suspects as to who could have been responsible for the murder, and I have to admit that even I was unsure of who did it while I was reading, it wasn't until the very end when the book outlined everything that I was sure. The family dynamics in this book are just so heart-wrenching. The father in the book, Roy, he's a seriously damaged man. He is suffering from some serious PTSD from war, he's dealing with constant pain from missing a leg, and he suffers from bad flashbacks. He doesn't make anything easy for anyone in the family, but especially from Tucker. Emily I felt so bad for, nothing really turned out the way she thought they would when she was young. Her marriage is hard, her son is always seeming to need money or attention, and the family just can't catch a break. I really felt for this family. If you are looking for a mystery, especially one that is more based in family dynamics then the specifics of a crime, then this is a book you should check out. I enjoyed it.

  • Jeanie
    2019-02-13 18:36

    Safe Keeping is the first book that I have read by Barbara Taylor Sissel. It is very well-written, an excellent second novel published under the Harlequin Mira imprint. This emotion-charged novel should be read with tissues handy! Your heart will be warmed, stretched and torn a bit as you read this expression of the incredible depth of love between parents and their children, brothers and sisters. I highly recommend this to a parent or brother or sister of one who has had a history of emotional challenges or facing criminal charges, as there is far more at stake than the public sees. More than those seeking award-winning headlines or conviction rates. There are people, people who love the person who is accused or convicted.What does one do when their beloved son is a murder suspect for the second time? When your desire to stand by your son threatens your relationship with your husband? How can a wife and mother preserve both relationships, as well as the one with other adult children in the family? You will see how this author portrays with great depth and sensitivity how Emily LeBay examines her relationships with her family, the challenges her son Tucker has faced, and other relational traumas within the family over the course of her marriage to Roy. The challenges that Emily’s daughter Lissa faces in her marriage, including how she and her husband respond to the charges her brother faces, can easily fill another novel, and certainly leaves an open door for a sequel. Woven amidst the relationships is the suspenseful search of Emily and Lissa while trying to exonerate Tucker. In hopes of finding evidence that will lead to another suspect, they also hope to find the key that will bring relief to the burdens that Roy, Tucker, and all the family members have carried too long. An extra to this novel that I appreciated was the author’s writing of how she came to write this story. It is often interesting to readers to see where the novel comes from and how the author has researched or “brainstormed” their writing.This novel was won from the publisher through a Goodreads contest; this is my own honest review.

  • Victoria
    2019-01-26 19:44

    This is such an engrossing novel - I read it in just one sitting! This family drama reels the reader in from its very first setence as a mother contemplates the fact ther her son may be a murderer. A hook like that just keeps the pages turning and turning! Split mostly between the voices of Tucker’s mother, Emily, and sister, Lissa, a small Texas comminutiy is haunted by a killer who has left two women strangled in the woods. And though there are other possibilities, the best lead an main person of interest is Tucker.As Emily struggles with her failures as a parent and continues to deal with her husband’s PTSD, Lissa starts investigating her brother’s innocenceon her own. She balances this while struggling to cope with unexpected news in her own marriage. This is the first book by Sissel that I have read, and it moves along at a very fast pace! I really thought it was nicely balanced between evoking emotions in the reader and really bringing each character to life. The backstories are woven in nicely, which really adds to the tension that keeps you on the edge of your seat. The Texas setting made a nice backdrop which adds to the overall authentic feeling of the characters and their lives. And while it does share a certain Lifetime-movie-esque quality, I must admit that this adds to making this a book that is impossible to put down! I wish that the main plotline had started a bit later though - I think there is more room for an even greater range of emotional depth in the chapters that lie unwritten after the conclusion. But, all in all, it’s an engaging read that firmly grasps a reader’s interest. Some of the backstory borders on the redundant at times, but it never impacts the overall pacing. It is an interesting topic, and though I prefer Emily Arsenault’s What Strange Creatures which involves a similar sort of premise and relationship between siblings, this is an entertaining read that will make readers think about those they know the best.

  • Stephanie
    2019-02-15 17:27

    I have to admit I was surprised to find out this was a Harlequin book. I remember them as being rather simple: girl meets boy, their personalities clash or there's some other obstacle that prevents them getting together, they overcome it, and live happily ever after. This book was nothing like that.There are enough reviews on the storyline itself, so I'm going to focus on how I felt reading it. Emily frustrated me, made me want to shake her, and make her wake up to the reality of what this whole incident was doing to her marriage. She constantly makes excuses for her son, and tries to escape into cooking, or talking to her best friend, or tentatively reaching out to an old love. Roy aggravated me as well--what the heck is he doing in that office all alone every day? We're never really given any hints, but it can't be good.Lissa is dealing with a secret of her own, and between this and impulsive, foolish actions on her part, communication between her and her husband is also coming to a halt. Actually, her husband, Evan, is the most rational of them all. I wish his character had been developed a bit more. Tucker, the catalyst for this whole story, is almost a shadow person compared to the others.But as I got more and more involved in the story, I began to see similarities between this family and my own, who dealt with a similar situation many years ago. No wonder this book got under my skin. It was like being a fly on the wall and watching it all unfold--not like a story neatly wrapped up in an hour on (insert your favorite crime drama here). Just as in a real life situation, parts of their pasts never dealt with color their actions and reactions. Regrets and wishes to make up for past mistakes cloud their judgments. It's not really that important whether Tucker is guilty or not, which is probably why his character was given a light touch. The point of the whole story is the family; how it evolves and devolves and what happens when things are covered up and not brought out into the open. It's the result of pretending things are always just fine.I won this book in a First Reads Goodreads Giveaway, but it did not alter my review in any way.

  • Kathy
    2019-02-19 15:39

    4.5 stars.Safe Keeping by Barbara Taylor Sissel is a beautifully complex and multi-layered novel that is quite compelling. When their adult son Tucker is the main suspect in the deaths of two young women, Emily and Roy Lebay are at odds over more than his guilt or innocence. Roy is ready to wash his hands of their troubled son while Emily cannot fathom deserting him when he needs them most. Siding with Emily, oldest daughter Lissa risks her marriage, and quite possibly her life, in her efforts to prove her brother's innocence.When it becomes increasingly clear that Tucker will most likely be arrested for murder, Emily's and Lissa's search for the truth about Tucker raises some very unsettling questions. Both wonder if the seeds of violence could have been sown in the kids' turbulent childhood as Roy struggled with PTSD after returning from Vietnam. After a violent and traumatic incident with Tucker, Emily insisted Roy finally seek treatment and their home life improved. However the family was never quite the same afterwards. Roy and Tucker's relationship became increasingly contentious, Emily slipped in to the role of peacemaker between them and Lissa became an overprotective older sister.The family slowly begins to crumble under the stress of the ongoing police investigation. Roy retreats from everyone, Emily tries to pretend everything is normal and Lissa begins her own inquiries into the murders. Revelations about long held secrets expose the family's dysfunction and an admission from Lissa appears to affirm Tucker's claims of innocence. Safe Keeping is an intriguing mystery and the Lebay family dynamics are incredibly fascinating. Barbara Taylor Sissel's thought-provoking storyline raises interesting questions about nature vs. nurture and the possible role genetics play in violent behavior. The novel's ending is dramatic and takes an unexpected turn that is impossible to predict. A riveting and suspenseful read that is incredibly poignant and rather haunting.

  • Maggie61
    2019-01-30 18:39

    At what point do you face the fact that your brother or son or another family member may have killed someone? Tucker had been in and out of trouble for so many years Lissa doesn't remember when he wasn't a problem. But even when he is accused of murdering a former girlfriend, Lissa and their other staunchly believe in his innocence and will do whatever it takes to prove it even when they put themselves in danger or sacrifice everything to save him. When a second girl he knows is murdered, Lissa and her mother still believe in him. After all, think of ourselves, who thinks a member of their family is capable of murder? Well, Tucker's father Roy for one. He has issues of his own and believes himself to be the cause of Tucker going bad. Even still, he cuts him no slack. He has given up on Tucker and wants nothing more to do with him. At what point do you say enough is enough and you have to face the truth that maybe that person you thought you knew may have done something so terrible. I found myself not really liking some of the characters and I understand other reader's comments about not connecting with any of them While Lissa loves her brother she's afraid to have a baby who could turn out like Tucker. What made him the way he is? Her husband Evan and Lissa seemed to have a good relationship until the topic of a possible pregnant comes up and things turn hostile. While I get Lissa wanting to prove Tucker's innocence, the lengths she goes to are sometimes just stupid. It was an interesting turn when she was thinking of Courtney and how Courtney couldn't accept things her brother Darren had done, Lissa totally doesn't see the parallel. Roy was so damaged but volatile, I was surprised Emily was still with him. Post traumatic stress or not, he was just not seen as a nice person. I would give this book 3 1/2. I found some areas just dragged, the last little bit picked up but the book didn't rise up to the potential it could have. Still a pretty good read though

  • Judy Collins
    2019-02-16 16:50

    SAFE KEEPING BY Barbara Taylor Sissel is a gripping suspense novel, a captivating saga of one family’s emotional journey, when forced to confront the real possibility that one of their own may have committed a horrible crime. Set in Texas, two murders hang over this family’s 34-year old son, Tucker. They must all sort through their mistakes and misunderstandings to uncover the truth.Tucker’s girlfriend Miranda was discovered dead, now another woman, Jessica, a friend Miranda’s has been found in the same stretch of woods, and the suspicion has fallen on Tucker once more.Tucker’s family—father, Roy; mother, Emily; sister, Lissa; and brother-in-law, Evan—are deeply involved in the emotional chaos of the investigation, as well as questioning his innocence--could he capable of such inconceivable acts.As these relationships are tested, will be bonds be strong enough to survive--a family under pressure, as they learn the truth, while considering the worst? Is forgiveness possible? Lissa and Emily are uncertain where to lay the blame for Tucker’s issues and everyone has their own issues. Are they the result of the tremendous fear he experienced as a child when in the throes of an episode of post-traumatic stress? Or is Tucker’s troubled nature the result of faulty genes?Emily and Roy make tremendous sacrifices in order to keep Tucker safe. How far would you go to protect your child? The family slowly begins to crumble under the stress of the ongoing police investigation. Roy retreats from everyone, Emily tries to pretend everything is normal, and Lissa begins her own inquiries into the murders with sacrifices. Revelations about long held secrets expose the family’s dysfunction—a riveting and haunting read.Enjoyed the conversation with the author at the end, and the inspiration for this novel ---fascination with the I-45 serial killings that plagued Texas for a number of years. Look forward to reading more from this talented author!

  • Jessica Bronder
    2019-02-13 20:33

    The Lebay family is one huge dysfunction after another. Roy, the father, has severe PTSD from Vietnam. This leads to him having issues with Tucker, his son. Tucker has problems of his own. His former girlfriend, Miranda, was found murdered last year in woods by his parents house. He was a person of interest but never convicted of the murder. Now Jessica has turned up dead in the same area and since she was Miranda’s friend and an acquaintance of Tucker, he is the suspect in this murder. Emily, Tucker’s mother, doesn’t believe that Tucker could have killed Jessica. Emily and her daughter Lissa decided to prove that Tucker is innocent even if Roy has washed his hands of Tucker. But there is a lot more to this story than they originally thought. There are many skeletons in this family’s closet and they are going to surprise you.I was pleasantly surprised with this book. There was a lot more to it than I thought there was going to be. It’s amazing how the different characters try to struggle through life and coping with the different situations in it. It always amazes me how things can happen in the family dynamics and not everyone knows what is happening. How can Emily be so blind to what is happening with her children? And Roy, what the heck? I can understand some of his behavior but that doesn’t excuse the crap he did/does at all.I was completely surprised by the ending but I think it did well wrapping up the book. This is one book that I think you will be pleasantly surprised by. It’s one that I recommend that you read.I was given a free copy in exchange for an honest review.