I was given this book as a gift, by mistake, by a friend of mine. A bunch of women in our circle were reading it, so when the author stopped by the local bookstore, my friend got signed copies for everyone. She handed it to me, and I’m guessing the blank expression on my face was not quite the reaction she was hoping for. I said thank you, obviously, and then asked her what the occasion was, and we both laughed when we realized what had happened. I put it on my bookshelf with every intention of reading it, but it’s sat there for a couple of years now.
I was in need of a new book to start before I could get back to the library, so I figured it was the perfect time to pick this one up and give it a shot. I’ve never read anything by Diane Chamberlain before, and I didn’t know anything about the plot, so I went into this with zero expectations.
Noelle, Tara, and Emerson (horrid name) have been best friends since college, but when Noelle takes her own life one night, the other two women realize they actually knew very little about her. They are tasked with the depressing job of cleaning out her house and going through her things, which leads to some discoveries none of them were quite ready to learn.
In theory, this is an excellent storyline. However, after a couple of chapters, I was on the verge of creating a Who’s Who index as a cheat sheet because I couldn’t keep all of the characters straight. This only worsened as the book went on and all of the drama started to unfold. This novel read like a trashy daytime soap opera. It’s one thing to have one or two dirty little secrets. That would have been FINE. The author could have stopped there and the story would have been palatable. But no. She went on and on and threw in every single cliched plot twist I can possible think of, making it completely unrealistic and borderline annoying. No, not borderline. It WAS annoying. After a while, I could see the next thing coming a mile away and it made me rage-y. I finished this book only because it takes a LOT for me to give up on a book, but this one really cut it close.
It pains me to say it, but I did not enjoy this book at all and do not recommend it unless secret siblings, affairs, love triangles, babies swapped at birth, painkiller addiction, and MORE all in ONE book are really your thing. Then this is right up your alley.