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Publisher's Summary

Emma's life isn't nearly as perfect as she thought. In fact, it's a house of cards, and it's getting ready to come tumbling down.   

A frightened woman in need of help shows up at her door. Emma leaves the room and, when she returns, the woman and her child are gone. There is no evidence that they were there, but Emma knows what she saw. Doesn't she?    

She might've been able to convince her friends and family, and even herself, of the truth if that had been the only incident. But it wasn't. It was only the first.    

In a few short weeks, Emma goes from belle of the ball to social outcast. Everyone in her life thinks she's crazy. And they might not be wrong. The Kramers have a secret after all, and Emma could be following in her grandmother's footsteps.    

Murder was never part of the deal before.    

But it is now.

©2019 Leah Montgomery (P)2019 Tantor

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Author has Potential

From what I can tell, this author has done mostly Romance under a pen name, and this is her breakout into the psych thriller genre. It was a good story, but I felt that it had far too much of the "Romance" as filler -- like it was tough for the author to keep the story on track without it. I'm not discounting Romance novels. It's a huge market, and though they're not for me, to each his or her own. So this is more a matter of taste. I'm not a prude, but too much sex in a novel just makes me roll my eyes, and I found myself rolling my eyes off and on throughout this one. I was engaged in the story, but every other chapter, it seemed, had to have some sex scene of some sort, and it kept throwing me out of the story. It was like two separate novels thrown together.

The main character also veered between impossible to relate to and easy to relate to. The rich housewife in a bubble is completely unrelatable to me, but I could get past that because most women in my generation and older can at least relate to the feeling of having their strings held by the men in their lives regardless of the life or the type of strings, and many of us can relate to the escapism provided by pharmaceuticals. But I think both the "poor me, look how hard my life is, you just don't understand -- I'm rich but my life is still hectic and hard" narrative and the string theme were both beat to death a bit. The author didn't give the reader enough credit to make the connection, and at times, the "I'm on a string" theme felt a bit showy rather than telly, and the "I'm rich, but look how hard my life is" felt a bit shoved in my face. Yes, we get it. Rich women have problems too, and all women can feel trapped regardless of how much money they do or don't have. But the constantly mentioning it over and over again just got almost obnoxious, especially as a woman who has had to fight through poverty and single motherhood. I don't discount the problems in the lives of women who have more. I'm not envious of them for having more. I'm not about comparing problems to see whose is bigger. Just show me your problems, don't constantly try to convince me that they are problems (if that makes sense).

Lastly, I had a little trouble with the a couple of villain's dialogue there at the end. There were a few villains, and at the end, there's a scene where they all have their say. One of them was believable. The other two were a bit hackneyed. It wasn't as bad as I've seen, but still a bit over the top for me.

All in all, despite these flaws, I did enjoy the story, and think the author has promise. I just hope that in future thrillers, she can keep the thriller going without all of the interruptions with constant showy sex scenes. You can insinuate that the characters are going there...and you don't have to he a prude, just don't keep throwing me out of the story. If it's marketed as a psychological thriller, let it be that. If it's marketed as a Romance, then put in all the sexy sex you desire.