Author: Catherine McKenzie
Original Publication Date: October 04, 2016
Genre: Fiction, Thriller, Suspense, Mystery
Goodreads Synopsis: Julie Prentice and her family move across the country to the idyllic Mount Adams district of Cincinnati, hoping to evade the stalker who’s been terrorizing them ever since the publication of her bestselling novel, The Murder Game. Since Julie doesn’t know anyone in her new town, when she meets her neighbor John Dunbar, their instant connection brings measured hope for a new beginning. But she never imagines that a simple, benign conversation with him could set her life spinning so far off course.
After a series of misunderstandings, Julie and her family become the target of increasingly unsettling harassment. Has Julie’s stalker found her, or are her neighbors out to get her, too? As tension in the neighborhood rises, new friends turn into enemies, and the results are deadly.
MY MINI REVIEW
Every single character in this novel was unlikable; even the one lady (Susan) who actually befriends Julie. There were tons of characters and all kinds of different twists— I had no idea which one I was supposed to be following most closely. There was enough going on for a whole season of Desperate Housewives but, unfortunately it was squished into a novel that wasn’t big enough for it.
The story is told in alternating POVs of John and Julie, who live across the street from each other. It also jumps from past to present. I would have preferred one or the other. Cindy and her rules were almost as bad as The Stepford Wives yet, I loved every minute of her juicy scenes. The ending wasn’t what I had hoped for but, I did enjoy the Domino Effect… how one thing lead to the other and everyone thought it was somehow their fault. There were a bit too many pointless tidbits– so many things that didn’t matter in the end, characters that we could’ve done without, and a lot of back and forth writing meant to confuse you (and succeeding).
My Rating: 3 out of 5
Dates Read: October 09-October 16, 2018
MY FAVORITE QUOTES
“Everyone’s life has its complications. Sometimes you get to choose them, and sometimes they’re thrust upon you. The trick is knowing which is which.”
“Who doesn’t stop to listen if someone uses their name? Only someone a lot stronger than I am.”
“When you live up in your head all day, sometimes it’s hard to distinguish what’s real from what’s imagined.”
“We all wear masks. The challenge is keeping them in place.”
“I’d been asking myself for a month what I was about, but I wasn’t waiting long enough to listen to the answers.”
“I gave in. You didn’t stay married for twenty years without knowing when to do that.”
“Memory does that– brightens some things and washes out others.”
“Don’t be the one who puts yourself down. There are enough people in the world who will do that for you.”
“I think you have to ask yourself whether the good outweighs the bad. No one’s perfect. Everyone has their stuff. Things they’ll do that you find annoying or don’t understand. But if you love someone, or think you might, then you decide what’s the most important thing. Them in your life, or not.”
“Life is made up of turning points. Forks in the road. We make choices every day that take us down one path over another. The thing I’ve learned is, there generally aren’t any signposts along the way.”
“I wiped the rain away from my face, but rain isn’t salty.”
“I couldn’t put it into words. How she brought color into my life. Color I didn’t know was missing.”
“Every breath. Every thought. There is no innocent action. Some actions end up having the force of a tempest. Their impact cannot be missed. Others are the blink of an eye. Passing by unnoticed.”
“There are so many versions of the truth, I’ve found. One for each person. But the whole truth? No one ever tells the whole truth. Do they?”
“With so many people with things to hide, separating out the fact from the fiction was impossible. Even if you managed to piece some of it together, the result would be fractured.”
“Just because I felt something didn’t mean the person who had caused the feeling had done anything wrong.”