June 2020 Owl Treats · Reviews · thriller

The Girl Before by JP Delaney

5 Hoots

28016509

This book left me on the edge of my seat! Everything was far from what it seemed to be.

I can honestly say that I am so happy that I borrowed this book! At first I thought we were going to get another version of “Fifty Shades of Grey” (not that there is anything wrong with that) but this book was so much more! The book isn’t just about an Architect who seduces vulnerable women, this book goes deeper than that. You have Emma whose part of the story is always titled “then” and Jane who is the “now”. Both of these women have had a trauma in their lives that make them agree to move into  a house created by Edward Monkford.  Jane was robbed and sexually assaulted and Jane had a stillborn baby girl. These  things are the reason these women are drawn to this strange house. By strange I mean that in order to live in this home they had to fill out a bunch of questions that might get them to the next phase, get approved for an interview with Edward Monkford, and agree to hundreds of rules in order to live there.

Once living there the house would record all of their daily data etc etc, Imagine a smart home on steroids. What really got my attention was when Edward started making passes at Jane and then finding out that everything he did with her he did with Emma. Then throw in that both of these women looked exactly like his dead wife, and you start getting this really uneasy feeling about Edward. What made it even more curious is when Emma’s ex-boyfriend approaches Jane at the home and tells Jane that Emma died in that house and that he believed Edward had something to do with it. Jane starts to wonder about Edward and what really happened with Emma. Was he involved in her death? Was it an accident? Was it suicide? The answer is far darker than you can imagine.

Seriously, the author did an amazing job weaving together Emma and Jane’s stories together. You start off seeing slight similarities between how Edward treats both Emma and Jane, but immediately you see that these two women are actually very different. Jane seemed to be a strong woman dealing with sorrow and Emma seemed like a broken woman who needed something more. But the thing is, the person they begin as are not who they actually who they are. There are several times when you think you have something figured out only to have rug pulled out from under you.

There was just so much that I loved about the way this book was written. Before each chapter you got to see the questions that both women had to fill out in order to  live in this home and I found myself thinking about my own answers and wondering what Edward would have chosen. This helped to start painting a dark feel to this book and it revealed a darker current under the surface of Edward. With each chapter you found out a little bit more about Edward and his bizarre relationship with Emma and how he was trying to replicate that relationship with Jane. But you would not find out the truth of what was going on until the very end. Overall, this book was a wonderful mixture of mystery and suspense without the need to start a new series. I definitely recommend you give it a read.

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