Monday, 17 June 2019

A Family of Strangers



Author
: Emilie Richards
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Mystery
Type: Trade Paperback
Pages: 496
Source: TLC Book Tours
Publisher: Mira Books
First Published: June 25, 2019
Opening Lines: "What do alligator's dream about?"


Book Description from GoodReads: Could a lifetime of memories...be a lifetime of lies? All her life Ryan Gracey watched her perfect older sister from afar. Knowing she could never top Wendy's achievements, she didn't even try. Instead Ryan forged her own path while her family barely seemed to notice. Now Wendy shares two little girls with her perfect husband while Ryan mourns the man she lost after a nearly fatal mistake in judgment. The sisters' choices have taken them in different directions, which is why Ryan is stunned when Wendy calls, begging for her help. There's been a murder--and Wendy believes she'll be wrongfully accused. 

While Wendy lies low, Ryan moves back to their hometown to care for the nieces she hardly knows. The sleuthing skills she's refined as a true-crime podcaster quickly rise to the surface as she digs for answers with the help of an unexpected ally. Yet the trail of clues Wendy's left behind lead to nothing but questions. Blood may be thicker than water, but what does Ryan owe a sister who, with every revelation, becomes more and more a stranger? Is Wendy, who always seemed so perfect, just a perfect liar--or worse?

My Rating: 3 stars

My Review: This domestic drama features a dysfunctional family (who has loads of baggage), a mystery and a budding romance. I like books that have a few focuses but for this book, I was in it for the mystery surrounding Ryan's missing sister.  

There were parts of the story that were interesting, and I found myself much more invested in Ryan's relationships with her nieces than I would have thought. There are some interesting characters and a good premise, but this is a much lighter read than I was expecting with the mystery, surprisingly, playing second fiddle to the other aspects of the story. Unfortunately, I guessed one of the big reveals very early on which didn't bode well for the suspense I was expecting.

I enjoyed the easy-going writing style and the humour that's sprinkled into the dialogue but felt I would have enjoyed this book a lot more if it had had a hearty edit. The story often rambles and is filled with superfluous descriptions that bog down the plot. I tended to skim these passages in search of the mystery and tension.

The book is touted as a mystery about Ryan's missing sister, but it feels like the book focuses more on a couple renewing a romance and Ryan learning how to parent her nieces. Cool Aunt points will be awarded, and, at times, the book was touching, but it doesn't make for the anticipated tension-filled read. Overall, this was a decent read for readers looking for a lighter read about a family in turmoil - in more ways than one.

Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Mira Books and TLC Book Tours for a complimentary advanced copy of this title in exchange for my honest review.

1 comment:

Sara Strand said...

Thank you for being on this tour! Sara @ TLC Book Tours

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