Grand Central Publishing | 26 October 2021 (Reprint Edition) | 336 pgs
I'm sure many readers of the YA and romance genre would be familiar with Colleen Hoover's books. Her books are usually emotionally charged and although I haven't read all of her books, I've enjoyed those that I'd read. Verity, however, is a suspense thriller and while it was intriguing, it has a disturbing and unsettling vibe so readers would either love or hate this book depending on one's reading preference.
Lowen Ashleigh is a writer but her fame is mediocre considering she has anxiety of dealing with social media and people. Her current life is stagnant with her mother's passing and dealing with financial issues until an opportunity arises. Jeremy Crawford, husband of bestselling author Verity Crawford, wants her to write the remaining of Verity’s bestselling series as his wife is unable to write due to an unfortunate accident. It is actually not a bad deal in Lowen’s opinion; afterall she gets to write and "hide" behind Verity’s fame, and the offer is attractive, too.
Under Jeremy's request, Lowen moves in to their house temporarily as she sort through Verity’s notes and familiarise with her works. In the midst of sorting through her notes, Lowen stumbles upon Verity’s autobiography, in which she chronicled her relationship with Jeremy from the moment they met right to their marriage, as well as her feelings and struggles with their young children. And judging from Jeremy's behaviours, it seems like he doesn't know anything about Verity’s autobiography and Lowen intends to keep it that way as her feelings towards Jeremy intensifies the more they live under the same roof.
This book is marketed as a romantic thriller (my library copy labelled this a romance with a heart logo), but personally I didn't see anything romantic about this complicated relationship. The author's writing was engaging and the intensity was great, but I didn't feel anything for the characters except a heavy sense of foreboding and . . . disturbing. The premise was dark yet refreshing from a different perspective, but I didn't love this story despite it was a page-turner. And that ending just blew my mind and left me quite flabbergasted. This book will stay in my mind for a long time, but I hope Colleen Hoover will write something different for her next attempt.
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