Tag Archives: suspense

Review: The Fifth Letter

The Fifth Letter by Nicola Moriarty
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Source: paperback copy courtesy of publisher

Do you have a group of best friends? Do they know everything about you or do you think you know all there is to know about each other? I have a group of my own best friends; four of us grew close during high school – almost like Joni, Deb, Eden, & Trina. Like them, 3 of us are married with children and one has just found The One and about to tie the knot in a few months’ time. *sniffs – am so very happy for her*

The beginning of their friendship is almost laughable. It was pointed out to them that they all have 2 things in common: surnames starting with “C” and their star signs (Scorpios). It’s not the silliest thing that have begun deep friendships, of course, but this was the basis that Joni decided that the four of them are meant to be best friends forever. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the most innocent start of the group…


Years later, they were still good friends. They see each other regularly and even have girls weekend away sometimes. This weekend though, things rather fell apart. They decided to each write an anonymous letter of secrets to tell each other. It really wasn’t that easy to be anonymous when you know each other well and in addition to that, Joni found a fifth letter with a rather menacing tone. What is she to do with it? Is she supposed to do anything about it?

I really enjoyed the beginning of The Fifth Letter. The stage was being set with Joni finding the letter, her confessional conversation with a Catholic priest (my favourite character), then flashbacks to their teen years. I started smiling on page 3 and found at the end of my train trip, that I still had a wide smile on my face. It wasn’t just funny but the flashbacks also remind me of my own memories of my friends. I didn’t actually like any of these 4 ladies even though I can identify/empathise with all of them in one thing or another. Joni, being the main protagonist and whose perspective we read from, can be very frustrating! She is lovely really but oh, she can be so blind! In saying that, however, I also couldn’t really pick the fifth letter writer. And that precious ending, oh wow, I was literally choking with laughter!

What began as a rather humorous and reminiscing read, this novel took a turn into a dark complex of human emotions. These women each have their own issues which they feel they cannot voice yet that is the first step towards healing. The Fifth Letter engages the reader to look beyond the surface, to check our unrealistic expectations of women and see them as a person, an individual, who is not perfect (no one is perfect) and needs loving supports.

Thank you, Nicola Moriarty, for this novel and the chance to reflect of my own friendships. Like Joni, Deb, Eden, & Trina, I’m sure that we do not know everything about each other and that’s okay… I am certain, however, that none of us harbours any ill will towards anyone in the group 😀

Thank you Harper Collins Publishers Australia for providing paperback copy in exchange of honest review

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Review: The Good Girl

the good girlThe Good Girl by Mary Kubica

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Source: paperback ARC courtesy of publisher

Some reviews have mentioned the similarity of this novel to Gone Girl. Unfortunately, I didn’t particularly enjoyed Gone Girl (due to disliking characters and having guessed the ending mostly right) so I started reading The Good Girl with some trepidation. Thankfully, this novel is structured quite different and I found that, therefore, I enjoyed the story a lot more.

The start of this novel was a little uncertain as it is being told from a number of perspectives and at different points in time (before, during, and after abduction). I usually ignore chapter headers/titles but this time around, I have to pay attention to them to know exactly who’s speaking and at point in time. It made a very good difference as it saves a lot of confusion and after some time, you slip in & out of perspectives quite easily. In the end, it wasn’t at all a difficult read.

This story is NOT told from Mia Dennett’s perspective at all; the supposedly main protagonist of this novel. It is told from the people around her –people who care about / for her. This difference in perspectives from Gone Girl is what I found most enjoyable as I didn’t have to hear from anyone whom I found annoying. Whilst it’ll be interesting to see what’s going on in Mia’s head, this method definitely built the suspense and the mystery of the plot. It wasn’t until right at the very end, where Mia ‘spoke’ and hit the readers with a wrecking ball. It was a very satisfying ending.

Whether your love or hate Gone Girl, you’d find that you will enjoy The Good Girl. The suspense, the mystery, the characters, and the structure of the novel will drive you reading on ‘til the early hours.

Thanks, Harlequin Books Australia for copy of book

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