A murder. A tragic accident….
Someone is dead.
But who did what?
WOAHHHH!!!! This book was freaking amazing!!! It was a genre change for me — it’s women’s fiction and mystery, not romance — but I was just in the kind of mood where I was craving something totally different than what I usually read…. so I tried this one! And I was BEYOND impressed with it.
Like holy WOW impressed.
The writing was fantastic — starkly honest, detailed, introspective, observant, multi-sided… the story kept me guessing right up until the end. There were these twists that totally shocked me (I mean like jaw-drop omgdidnotseethatcoming shocked) and I just had these chiiiiiiills run through me at some of the reveals.
This author really just “gets” people and interactions on a very deep level in a way I’ve seldom seen before. Gah. It was powerful. I mean really. Holy woman power!!! I loved the writing, I loved story, and can honestly say that it had one of the single most satisfying endings ever.
So… what’s it about?
It has a large cast of characters, but focuses mostly on three women’s lives. They all have children entering Kindergarten in the same year. Their lives are vastly different but closely connected in ways that even they don’t realize at first. And there’s a murder. Someone dies at a trivia night. But you don’t know who. And you don’t know who killed them. No clue! Part of the whole mystery is figuring this out, and it’s done in such a cool way — an fascinating mix between the story of the weeks counting down to that night mixed in with snippets of interviews being given after that night of people describing what happened.
I’m not going to say a word more but I will assure you that the ending delivers on every level!
This whole book really highlights how the same event can be seen in so many ways, from so many different perspectives, and from each of those sides, it can appear vastly different. You never really know what someone else is thinking or going through, what they’re capable of, what secrets they’re keeping…
Just so you know, this is not a dark read at all. It’s very serious at times, very light at others. But it’s also not dark and it’s not scary. A few people were asking me so I thought I’d clarify that.
Actually I saw someone describe it as a “juicy drama” and I think that’s the perfect description!
It’s just the kind of story that raises a million questions in your mind. It makes you THINK, keeps you wondering, theorizing, questioning everything. It’s detailed and engaging. Can you tell I loved it?
There are some very serious themes — domestic violence, single parenthood, motherhood in general, bullying, murder, secrets, and more. It’s almost scarily accurate in many of it’s depictions.
Hehe this was my status update from 91%:
GAAAASPPPPPPPPP — did NOT see that coming!!!! Holy SHITTTTT!!
HOLY. FUCKING. SHIT.
I mean WOAH. WOAH. WOAHHHHHH.
This author is just so skilled. The plot was cleverly woven and it just delivered all the right details at all the right times. In fact, I think I actually have all of a certain chapter highlighted. ALL of it.
It was an incredible reading experience. I totally get why they’re making it into a movie (with Reese Witherspoon & Nicole Kidman) because I could literally picture it in my mind as I was reading.
I have a ton of quotes highlighted in my book, but in case you’re wondering why I don’t have them included in this review, it’s because in retrospect, I realized that given this type of story, they might not make sense out of context. So I’m just going to let you read the book for yourself and read them that way!
I’ve also read another book by this author, The Husband’s Secret (My review), and even though I thought that one was really good, I actually loved this one more because I was much happier with this ending. This one left me with such a strongly good feeling while The Husband’s Secret left me feeling a little… unsettled (like the emotional price paid was too great)… but this one was just WOW.
I highly recommend it!
Rating: 5 STARS!! Standalone women’s fiction/mystery (not romance).