Jacqueline Bublitz: Before You Knew My Name

This review is written with thanks to Pigeonhole for the opportunity to read and review Before You Knew My Name.


This is not just another novel about a dead girl.

When she arrived in New York on her 18th birthday carrying nothing but $600 cash and a stolen camera, Alice was looking for a fresh start. Now, just one month later, she is the city’s latest Jane Doe, an unidentified murder victim.

Ruby Jones is also trying to start over; she travelled halfway around the world only to find herself lonelier than ever. Until she finds Alice Lee’s body by the Hudson River.

From this first, devastating encounter, the two women form an unbreakable bond. Alice is sure that Ruby is the key to solving the mystery of her life – and death. And Ruby – struggling to forget what she saw that morning – finds herself unable to let Alice go. Not until she is given the ending she deserves.


I am simply astonished that Before You Knew My Name is a debut novel. I was immediately struck by the quality of Bublitz’s writing and the way in which she can describe beautiful scenery and complex emotions with simple phrases that resonated with me really well.

Both Alice and Ruby are very different to me, but I could not help but relate to them and feel sympathy towards them. Before You Knew My Name is written from Alice’s perspective. It took me a few chapters to get my head around this as it’s obviously quite unusual but it’s a really effective technique and it makes the novel stand out from others in the genre.

Unlike many murder mysteries, Before You Knew My Name doesn’t have any particularly explosive moments. Instead it packs a punch by making me really care about the characters, including the supporting characters. I felt really emotionally involved in the story and really wanted to know what had happened to Alice.

Before You Knew My Name is a novel I will still be thinking about for a while yet.

Before You Knew My Name is available from Amazon.

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