I finished this book on a plane four days ago, and I’m already forgetting it. It was fine – perfect plane fare, and it fit in my purse. But it was tremendously forgettable.
Four girls become fast friends at boarding school, something terrible happens, they grow up with a horrible secret, and events come back to haunt them after they’re all grown and living miles away from each other. Not very original, sure, but there’s definitely potential there. Fifteen years after they left school under a cloud of suspicion, Kate texts the other three: “I need you,” and they all drop everything and meet at Kate’s house to take care of whatever the emergency is.
The story is told back and forth through flashbacks and current events, giving the reader little pieces of the mystery as we go along. The Bad Thing is pretty obvious pretty early on, and I was a little disappointed (“was that it?”), so I was pleased when Ware did add on a few layers at the end.
So, the bones of a good story are there. However. I did not like the main character (Isa? I already spaced her name) at all. She’s awful and self-centered and horrible to anybody who isn’t one of her three friends or her infant daughter (including her husband). None of the four were terribly likeable; they’re known for playing The Lying Game and all their fellow students know not to trust anything they say. Also, they knew each other for less than one school year, then hadn’t seen each other for more than a decade! I understand sudden, intense friendships, but the way they’re all ready to drop everything and blow up their entire lives for someone they haven’t seen for 10 years seemed like a lot, especially for such self-centered characters.
I dunno. I’ve seen Ruth Ware’s name around a lot; maybe I should give her another chance. Is The Woman in Cabin 10 any better?