Release date: July 10, 2018
Publisher: Scout Press
Frances Metcalfe is struggling to stay afloat.
A stay-at-home mom whose troubled son is her full-time job, she thought that the day he got accepted into the elite Forrester Academy would be the day she started living her life. Overweight, insecure, and lonely, she is desperate to fit into Forrester’s world. But after a disturbing incident at the school leads the other children and their families to ostracize the Metcalfes, she feels more alone than ever before.
Until she meets Kate Randolph.
Kate is everything Frances is not: beautiful, wealthy, powerful, and confident. And for some reason, she’s not interested in being friends with any of the other Forrester moms—only Frances. As the two bond over their disdain of the Forrester snobs and the fierce love they have for their sons, a startling secret threatens to tear them apart…because one of these women is not who she seems. Her real name is Amber Kunick. And she’s a murderer.
In her masterful follow-up to The Party, Robyn Harding spins a web of lies, deceit, and betrayal, asking the question: Can people ever change? And even if they can, is it possible to forgive the past?
God I love domestic thrillers so much you guys! There’s something about average people being in bizarre situations that never fails to reel me in and I was sucked into Her Pretty Face right from the start. This book was highly compulsive and utterly addicting, I raced through it in just a few hours never quite sure how things would play out in the end.
You have several viewpoints here, Frances a Mom struggling to fit in with the other moms at her sons school, Daisy the daughter of Kate who is Frances only friend and DJ who’s connection to the story is murky at first. The pacing of this was amazing, the chapters were short and the various switches only served to keep me more engaged. I was always eager to see what would happen with each character at the end of a chapter and was equally invested in all three perspectives. Harding has a smooth, fluid writing style and the jumps from character to character were seamless.
I do want to say that I had most of the little twists worked out early on, so if you’re expecting a bunch of shocking reveals and are an avid thriller reader, you won’t find that here. However, Harding did catch me off guard on one aspect and the book didn’t rely on a bunch of twisty moments to propel the plot forward but instead focused more on the characters behavior and decisions to keep it on the exciting side.
I would say this is a lighter style mystery with some darkness lurking under the surface. These women are hiding some secrets that are disturbing but there isn’t much graphic violence. Recommended for a summer mystery best read by the water, the pages will fly by and you’ll be hooked from the start, dying to know what secrets will be revealed.
Her Pretty Face in three words: Compulsive, Fluid and Engaging.
Overall rating: 4.5/5
Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.