“Book Review: Time to Run”
Reviewed by Jaylynn Korrell
A thrilling race toward freedom.
Who doesn’t love a good mystery thriller? If that person exists, they’ll quickly change their mind after reading Time to Run. Susan C. Muller’s latest novel is a high stakes journey across America, and if you’re looking for action, suspense, or a compassionate look inside the lives of compelling characters, this is the novel for you.
When Jax Duncan drops off some papers at Senator Sheppard’s house, she knows she’s crossing a line. She goes uninvited with something he needs, but she wants something in return: a recommendation for a higher position. With her Jimmy Choo shoes guiding the way, she enters the house and within minutes is the sole witness to the senator’s murder.
After an impressive escape from the mob, Jax leaves her lush life behind and enters into a life on the run. As the sole suspect in the murder, she reinvents herself time and time again in different locations for the next four years. She bounces from city to city, from state to state. But during those years she’s trailed by a mysterious mobster, who she calls Ponytail, and a relentless FBI agent named Lincoln, both waiting for her to make the wrong move.
Jax is a rich girl turned fugitive in this action-packed novel. Muller does a fantastic job of making this main character go from unlikable to an absolute fan favorite. As she is left to her own devices, her survival instincts kick in and even her pursuers begin to wonder if the whole rich girl thing was just an act. It is critical that she gets the hang of being a fugitive as two completely different fates await her, depending on which man, if any, is able to capture her. With her almost seamless escapes, the reader will often question if she herself is a professional. As a reader, I found this is-she, isn’t-she mystery to be one of the most suspenseful and fascinating aspects of the book.
The dynamic characters in Time to Run reveal parts of themselves on this journey that they never thought they’d have to unpack. With such high stakes and many life or death situations, everyone is forced to examine their lives, what’s most important to them, and how they want to live in the future. If Jax gets out of this, she can live a life of freedom. If Ponytail, the mobster chasing her, can complete his tasks, he can go back to New Jersey and see his mom. If Lincoln, the FBI agent, can capture the fugitive safely and crack the case, it has the potential to be the highlight of his entire career. But how much are they each willing to give up to accomplish their goals? How much will they have to sacrifice to achieve them?
The cost of freedom varies for each character, and Muller graciously gives each of their stories enough value that we’re unsure whose freedom matters most. This book speaks to the humanity within us all by diving into the idea that every complex person is more than just their title.
Susan C. Muller nails it with Time to Run. The pace throughout the whole book is steady and unrushed. She reveals more about each character’s past evenly throughout, giving the reader just enough to keep them wanting more. In true mystery thriller fashion, we’re taken on a bumpy ride that twists and turns as soon as we start to get comfortable.
Release date: June 23, 2019
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