Genre: Thriller/Mystery, Suspense, Romance
Rating: ★★★★ ½ (out of 5)
Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer on the brink of financial ruin when she accepts the job offer of a lifetime. Jeremy Crawford, husband of bestselling author Verity Crawford, has hired Lowen to complete the remaining books in a successful series his injured wife is unable to finish. Lowen arrives at the Crawford home, ready to sort through years of Verity’s notes and outlines, hoping to find enough material to get her started. What Lowen doesn’t expect to uncover in the chaotic office is an unfinished autobiography Verity never intended for anyone to read. Page after page of bone-chilling admissions, including Verity’s recollection of what really happened the day her daughter died. Lowen decides to keep the manuscript hidden from Jeremy, knowing its contents would devastate the already grieving father. But as Lowen’s feelings for Jeremy begin to intensify, she recognizes all the ways she could benefit if he were to read his wife’s words. After all, no matter how devoted Jeremy is to his injured wife, a truth this horrifying would make it impossible for him to continue to love her.
It has been a hot minute since I read anything by Colleen Hoover–I think the last time I read a book by her was in 2016. There wasn’t any particular reason for it, I think I just overloaded on romance novels and decided to read more fantasy. That said, this book got caught on my radar in December 2018 and it was already getting some serious hype on bookstagram. I read the blurb and it definitely caught my interest, but I picked it up when I saw it randomly on Kindle Unlimited (UK). I was in a serious reading slump for all February, but this book took me right out of that!
“What you read will taste so bad at times, you’ll want to spit it out, but you’ll swallow these words and they will become part of you, part of your gut, and you will hurt because of them.”
To say that Verity is a little different from CoHo’s other novels would be a serious understatement. That would a little like comparing puppies and rainbows to axe wielding maniacs–only slightly different 😜 Although I guess you can classify this as a romance, it has a fairly dark plot that CoHo has filled with many twists and turns that leave you gaping at the end. At least, that’s what it did to me. Just when I thought there surely couldn’t be another plot twist, CoHo certainly proved me wrong with the final pages of the novel.
Right from the start, Verity has a very somber and a slow creeping sinister feeling to it. I was certainly put on edge and the discomfort only grew incrementally when Lowen moved into the Crawford’s home. My mind was often leaping to one conclusion after another as the the story progressed. I wasn’t very taken with any of the characters in this novel — I didn’t particularly like Lowen, I couldn’t quite place whether Jeremy was an innocent party or not, and I developed a fiery hatred for Verity almost from the moment her unfinished autobiography is introduced. While this usually deters me from reading a book, I found myself unable and unwilling to put it down until I knew what happened–it was really that good! It was actually quite refreshing to read parts of the story from the ‘villain’s’ perspective, even from as dark and twisted a mind as Verity’s was.
I honestly don’t think I can say anymore about this story without giving key plot points away. I will just say that it definitely had me gripping my bedsheets as I read in bed at night. There were definitely some parts that gave me serious goosebumps and made me want to squeal in fright– I’m thinking about one particular moment involving a patio scene during the day time! Overall, I thought this was a pretty screwed up suspense/thriller, obviously in the very best way! If you like being creeped out, I highly recommend it!
Have you read Verity yet or are you planning to? Did it successfully creep you out or was it just ‘meh’ for you?
Let me know in the comments and let’s chat books!