Published by St. Martin's Griffin on January 9, 2018
Source: the publisher
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Four suburban mothers and friends conspire to cover up a deadly crime in this heart-stopping novel of suspense in the tradition of Lisa Scottoline and Lisa Unger.
Alison, Julie, Sarah, Heather. Four friends living the suburban ideal. Their jobs are steady, their kids are healthy. They’re as beautiful as their houses. But each of them has a dirty little secret, and hidden behind the veneer of their perfect lives is a crime and a mystery that will consume them all.
Everything starts to unravel when Alison spots a nasty bruise on Heather’s wrist. She shares her suspicions with Julie and Sarah, compelling all three to investigate what looks like an increasingly violent marriage. As mysterious injuries and erratic behavior mount, Heather can no longer deny the abuse, but she refuses to leave her husband. Desperate to save her, Alison and the others dread the phone call telling them that she’s been killed. But when that call finally comes, it’s not Heather who’s dead. In a moment they’ll come to regret, the women must decide what lengths they’ll go to in order to help a friend.
Just Between Us is a thrilling glimpse into the underbelly of suburbia, where not all neighbors can be trusted, and even the closest friends keep dangerous secrets. You never really know what goes on in another person’s mind, or in their marriage.
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Just Between Us by Rebecca Drake was so much drama, and I mean that in a really good way. It was such fun to read. The story follows four suburban mom-friends as they navigate how to not-get-caught after helping one of their own cover up a major crime.
One of my favorite things about this book is that it is written in four POVs. Sometimes I feel like so many points of view can be a little bit cluttered and clunky, but I think it worked here. I’ve seen where some other reviewers felt like the characters might be too similar and were difficult to distinguish from one another, but I really didn’t have much trouble keeping them apart once I got to know each one of them. All four of the friends felt real enough in their interactions; they loved one another but they also had disagreements and were even snarky with one another sometimes. The most relatable thing about them, I think, is that occasionally one or more of them felt ‘left out’ when around the others for various reasons. In real life, we have all felt that way before; I feel like the author wrote that feeling into these relationships very well.
Just Between Us is fairly fast-paced once the friends notice the bruises on Heather’s skin. Once they see that Heather has been injured and is at-risk, they make a plan to watch out for her and make sure that she is okay. From here, things get a little crazy. These friends make so many choices seemingly without giving thought to reason or consequence – individually and as a group – and everything snowballs until their lives seem like a total mess.
If you’re able to suspend your disbelief and enjoy the drama, you’ll probably enjoy the ride these women take you on. There are plenty of twists and turns along the way and many of them were a shock to me. However, if you tend to question every little step that characters take: well, you may have a harder time coming to terms with just how completely out of control things get for this group of friends.
I personally enjoyed it. I love reading something and yelling “NO! YOU SHOULDN’T HAVE DONE THAT!” and “GIRL YOU KNOW BETTER!” at the book or the characters as dramatic plot-things unfold. I love the twists. I don’t mind the crazy. I can suspend my disbelief.
Don’t take that to mean this is a completely fluffy read, though. There is a lot to think about inside of all of the fun drama. Would you put your loyalty to your best friend before your husband and children? Should you tell your very best friends all of your secrets? Exactly how far would you go to protect your friends?