Sunday, October 6, 2019

Close to You - by Kerry Wilkinson

Release Date: 10/17/19
He's dead. Dead. Morgan, more than anyone knows this for a fact, 100%. She killed her husband. She disposed of his body. He isn't missing like she's led everyone else to believe. She knows this and yet, two years later, it's as if he's suddenly reappeared. It's simply not possible, but there he is in the back of her 'personal trainer of the year' acceptance photo. David.

This premise is exactly what led me to request and dive into, "Close to You" by Kerry Wilkinson. The cover art does well to bring the reader into the main character's persona; she's alone and staring into the lake, recalling the events that led to her husband's untimely demise. The suspense is real and you can feel it as you move through the pages, between what's happening now and why it happened.

I've read works by this author before and loved them, fast-paced, twisty and suspenseful. However, for me, this read was a solid 4/5 stars.
While the tension was certainly present, what didn't work for me was the pace of the first half of the book and the predictability and repetitiveness of the main character, Morgan Persephone. I found it hard to connect with her personality, for the most part. Morgan settles with David, when most everyone cautions against it, so as not to be alone. She then stays with him, despite his actions, because he's the only one who has ever 'believed' in her.

During "The Why" Morgan becomes somewhat predictable. David lies, she forgives him. He showboats to gain the favor of those close to her, she shrugs it off. He follows her and hides in the bushes while she's training a client; when Morgan later confronts him about it he claims to have had a panic attack over their recent argument then proclaims his love and... she forgives him. She loves him too. He exaggerates his career field, she rationalizes his explanations. He lies about his whereabouts to cover his financial insecurities, she agrees to marry him. David goes so far as to 'fantasize' about having kids with Morgan, and she ends up considering the idea. Simultaneously as we journey through "The Now" sections of the book there's this sense of, "Yes, you killed him. Yes, we know. Yes, you got away with it."

I did enjoy quite a few of the main characters' one-liners that were dispersed throughout the book though. Here are a few to give you a taste: "There's nothing quite like a good hypocrite."- chapter one. "In my experience, the moment anyone invites you to a party, you start thinking of ways to possibly get out of it." - chapter two.

Those bits of internal humor combined with the anticipation of uncloaking the antagonist's identity were the defining parts of this story for me, it's what thrust the last half of the book into a true page-turner. Someone is clearly trying to mess with Morgan, but who? Could David really be back? What of his sister, this Yasmine character we heard so little about? Could David maybe have a secret twin? Could Morgan's best friend Jane have been somehow secretly involved with Morgan's dead husband? What about Jane's husband Ben? Morgan's new boyfriend Andy? Could they somehow have an invested interest in making her suffer? These are all thoughts that crossed my mind while reading.

I'm not a believer in spoiling the ending, or revealing the twist at the end - but let's just say it was not at all what I was expecting but definitely worth the race to the finish line once it picked up! I'd recommend this book to anyone looking for a suspenseful read, with an interest in marital drama and domestic disturbances.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher Bookouture, and the author Kerry Wilkinson for providing me with an advanced reader copy of this title in exchange for an honest review. 

I just reviewed Close to You by Kerry Wilkinson. #CloseToYou #NetGalley

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