Review: The Ever After by Sarah Pekkanen

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Synopsis from Good Reads:

In this intricate and enthralling domestic drama, perfect for fans of Big Little Lies and The Affair, the internationally bestselling author of the “gossipy page-turner” (Glamour) The Perfect Neighbors goes deep into a marriage in crisis, peeling back layers of secrets to discover where the relationship veered off course—and whether it is worth saving.

Josie and Frank Moore are happy…at least Josie thinks they are. As parents of two young girls in the Chicago suburbs, their days can be both busy and monotonous, and sometimes Josie wonders how she became a harried fortysomething mother rather than the driven career woman she once was. But Frank is a phenomenal father, he’s handsome and charismatic, and he still looks at his wife like she’s the beautiful woman he married more than a decade ago. Josie isn’t just happy—she’s lucky.

Until one Saturday morning when Josie borrows her husband’s phone to make a quick call—and sees nine words that shatter her world.

Now Josie feels as if she is standing at the edge of a sharp precipice. As she looks back at pivotal moments in the relationship she believed would last forever, she is also plunging ahead, surprising everyone (especially herself) with how far she will go to uncover the extent of her husband’s devastating secret.

With her “conversational writing style and a knack for making readers care about her characters” (The Washington Post) bestselling author Sarah Pekkanen paints a vivid, kaleidoscopic portrait of a marriage before and during a crisis—and of a woman who fears that the biggest secret of all may be the one she’s hiding from herself.

I received a copy of this title via NetGalley. It does not impact my review.

The Ever After will be available on June 5, 2018. 

What I Liked

*While I could not personally identify with the plight of the main character in this book, I have had a front row seat to someone in a very similar situation for the last several months and I feel like The Ever After will be very relatable to a lot of women. There is a note from the author in the beginning of the book that shares a statistic that an affair occurs in one of every three marriages. There are many reasons I can’t imagine myself ever getting married, but kudos to all you who are because I can not imagine trusting someone enough to do it.

*I do really like Sarah Pekkanen’s writing. This is my third book by her and I find her writing to be very compulsive. Even though it’s a lot of introspection and very little action, I had a hard time putting the book down. Josie’s character development was very well done and if you are a fan of character-driven stories, then I definitely recommend Pekkanen’s books.

What I Didn’t Like

*Josie was kind of hard to like most of the time. I thought a lot of her reaction was normal and justified, but she did kind of stop being a parent to her daughters for awhile and I didn’t think that was ok. I also thought that all of the flashback chapters kind of painted her as a shrew and Frank as the long-suffering husband. I felt like this was to help justify why Frank did what he did (not excusing it, but still a reason for it) and it just didn’t sit well with me.

*I didn’t like the ending (it’s why I’m rating this 1/2 a star lower than I probably would have otherwise). I had a very definite opinion about which way I wanted the story to go and it didn’t go that way. I do think that there will be people that will really support the ending, though. I think it might depend on your own emotional baggage you bring to the book.

Overall

Overall, I did enjoy The Ever After. I really liked the writing and how relatable the story felt to me, even though it’s not a situation I’ve personally experienced. I thought the ending was a little rushed, though. After spending such a long time dissecting Josie and Frank’s relationship, I thought the resolution deserved a little more page time, as well.

Overall Rating (out of 5): 3.5 Stars

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18 thoughts on “Review: The Ever After by Sarah Pekkanen

  1. I’ve been so curious about this book, and I have a copy of it. I generally enjoy reading marriage-in-crisis books, and have never read anything by this author. I think I’ll try it since you liked it.

  2. I only ever read the wife between us but i thought the characters were done well. (Maybe it’s because she co-wrote that with someone else). This one still sounds quite intriguing, so i’m totally marking it for the tbr 😀

  3. Great review, Stephanie. I’ve only read The Wife Between Us and of course there’s no way I could tell what this author’s writing style is even like with just that book hahah It’s nice to hear that it isn’t a bad novel at all though and you definitely made me wonder what thrillers the author has written in the past now. 😀

    • Thanks! This is only the second Pekkanen book I’ve read that wasn’t a collaboration, but I really like her writing. Very character-driven. Though I wouldn’t consider this or the first book I read a thriller.

  4. Pingback: May 2018 Recap | Stephanie's Book Reviews

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