Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Review: Just Between Us - Rebecca Drake

Just Between Us
by Rebecca Drake
Published: January 9, 2018 St. Martin's Press
Genre: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller

Four suburban mothers and friends conspire to cover up a deadly crime in this heart-stopping novel of suspense in the tradition of Lisa Scottoline and Lisa Unger.

Alison, Julie, Sarah, Heather. Four friends living the suburban ideal. Their jobs are steady, their kids are healthy. They’re as beautiful as their houses. But each of them has a dirty little secret, and hidden behind the veneer of their perfect lives is a crime and a mystery that will consume them all.

Everything starts to unravel when Alison spots a nasty bruise on Heather’s wrist. She shares her suspicions with Julie and Sarah, compelling all three to investigate what looks like an increasingly violent marriage. As mysterious injuries and erratic behavior mount, Heather can no longer deny the abuse, but she refuses to leave her husband. Desperate to save her, Alison and the others dread the phone call telling them that she’s been killed. But when that call finally comes, it’s not Heather who’s dead. In a moment they’ll come to regret, the women must decide what lengths they’ll go to in order to help a friend.

Just Between Us is a thrilling glimpse into the underbelly of suburbia, where not all neighbors can be trusted, and even the closest friends keep dangerous secrets. You never really know what goes on in another person’s mind, or in their marriage.

4 Stars

Talk about a suspenseful read with complex characters, a twisted storyline, and my absolute favorite quality in a suspenseful thriller, unreliable narrators. Four close friends leave behind their suburban wife titles when someone from their circle dies and letters start showing up in their mail boxes. With a storyline similar to Big Little Lies, Just Between Us is a domestic thriller that hooked me from the very first page.

"A part of me needed to believe her."

You always know, the minute you pick up a book about a set of friends or a cute, suburban area, that there will be plenty of secrets and lies within its pages. At first, nothing seems that outrageous, any person would want their friend out of a harmful relationship, but it gets increasingly more complicated when the four women join together to hide something. The book is written in the perspectives of Alison, Julie, Sarah, and Heather. In many ways they are similar women; they are mothers, they are wives, and they share a passionate love of coffee and girl time. While I didn't connect with the women ever, I was immediately drawn in to their individual stories and their varying perspectives on the situation they found themselves in. It was very suspenseful, with several plotlines that I could definitely see happening in real life and twists that upped the intrigue. Though parts of the novel didn't seem plausible, I easily passed over those moments due to my curiosity and the desire to know whodunit. I never could have guessed the end, not until every hand was revealed, so that was certainly the best part of Just Between Us.

"There are secrets in every marriage. This is my secret."

Just Between Us is made for those readers who are fascinated by the mysteries that can haunt the everyday person. The wives, the unsuspecting husbands, the secrets between friends are all the things that made this book so interesting. The character interactions in this book and the backwards character development, discovered by the unraveling secrets, will keep any reader turning the pages.

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