Bonnie Kistler | The Cage

The Book: 

The Cage by Bonnie Kistler
Published February 15th 2022 by Harper
Date read: February 2, 2022

The Characters: 

Shay Lambert

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Buy it on | Amazon

The Plot (from Goodreads):

On a cold, misty Sunday night, two women are alone in the offices of fashion conglomerate Claudine de Martineau International. One is the company’s human resources director. Impeccably dressed and perfectly coiffed, she sits at her desk and stares somberly out the window. Down the hall, her colleague, one of the company’s lawyers, is buried under a pile of paperwork, frantically rushing to finish.

Leaving at the same time, the two women, each preoccupied by her own thoughts, enter the elevator that will take them down from the 30th floor.

When they arrive at the lobby, one of the women is dead. Was it murder or suicide?

An incredibly original novel that turns the office thriller on its head, The Cage is a wild ride that begins with a bang and picks up speed as it races to its dramatic end.

Click here for book spoilers for The Cage
Book spoilers ahead–if you haven’t yet read The Cage, I suggest you turn back now.

The Twist:

Alright, things were a little convoluted at times, so please let me know if I got anything wrong. 

Shay was arrested for Lucy’s murder because her estranged half-brother sold the ghost gun that Lucy was killed with. She maintained her innocence and was bailed out by Mark Ivins, a lawyer who was building a case against CDMI.

Shay had uncovered a human trafficking ring that CDMI was running. Barrett (the acting boss of CDMI) had bribed Shay’s husband to help set her up. The FBI came for Barrett, and he died by suicide. Shay took over the company.

The Ending:

Based on the epilogue, Lucy had come to CDMI to kill herself the night of the elevator incident, but decided not to go through with it because of her children. That’s why she had the gun with her. Shay told her that she knew about the human trafficking, and Lucy tried to kill her because she couldn’t let the secret get out. There was a scuffle, and Shay must have redirected the gun at Lucy.

The Review: 

Thank you to Harper for both this physical copy and the ALC of The Cage.

I went into The Cage expecting a locked-room thriller similar to The Escape Room. It ended up being more about what happened after the elevator, and somewhat reminded me of Whisper Network.

Written by a former trial lawyer, there is a LOT of legal talk in The Cage. I liked it–I thought it made the story feel more real–but I can understand why some readers thought it bogged down the storyline a little bit. I would put Bonnie Kistler in the same league as Alafair Burke, so if you love Alafair’s legal thrillers you’ll be sure to enjoy The Cage as well.

I thoroughly enjoyed Shay as the main character. Life kept putting her down, but she never gave up and always found something else to fight for. She did what she needed to in order to survive, but still found a way to be compassionate to others in the meantime.

Some suspension of belief is required at some plot points, and I found certain scenes to be a little convoluted. Overall, though, the story was riveting and enjoyable.

Audio Review: The audiobook of The Cage was narrated by Piper Goodeve and Chris Andrew Ciulla. I absolutely love when audiobooks make use of a full range of media, such as the 911 call audio used in this production. It made the book all that much more fun to listen to!

“Wear the face you want the world to see, and that’s the way the world will see you.”

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