Reading is the only thing in the world I am good at. A lifetime of reading, fifteen years of working in bookstores, and libraries, and an obsession with the written word makes me qualified enough to talk someone's ear off about books. Now I am getting more ARCs than I have room for in the house. Let me get back to reading them!
There will be no spoilers here, although if you end up reading this, the ending might be become obvious to you. (It wasn't to me, but I didn't have enough interest in the book to be looking for clues.
I was sure this would be a literary thriller, and I was looking forward to it, especially since I received an unexpected ARC from a librarything.com giveaway. However, this book ended up being a disappointment for me, although it was a decent enough read. I finished it over the course of a single day, and it kept me entertained to the end. There were a lot of characters I just hated for the entire book, mostly for their selfishness, but that part didn't bother me. At the end I could see it was an entire story about selfish people, and how they end up being burned by themselves, and each other. I didn't mind reading about these creeps, since I could see they deserved each other, but the story didn't really focus on a crime, or a mystery, like I thought it would. It focused on the evolution of a friendship between Eli, and Brett, who meet in college. Eventually, it moves most of the narration to focus on Brett's increasing interest, and eventual marriage to Charlie, Eli's brother. All this is just fine, but it was not what I expected from the jacket's description. While it was a lovely portrait of a marriage that is only as strong as the pretenses it was made on, I got a little tired of reading about Brett's weird possession of Charlie. Like Catherine in Wuthering Heights, it was a lot of "Oh, I hate that I love him! Send him away! No bring him back! I can't live without him! No, let me try! Oh, what can I do!" Except all these dramatics are narrated in a quiet, steady, somewhat obnoxious tone, which after awhile starts to get on the nerves, especially as Brett becomes more and more entitled as the book goes on. (Why shouldn't her ex-fiance's uncle open up his multi-million dollar beach house to accommodate her, and her daughter by another man?) While it was an OK read, I don't know that I will be recommending this to anyone. It's too dull to be a thriller, and not deep enough to be literary.