ARC: The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

Posted on 08/18/2014 in Book Review / 1 Comment

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ARC: The Good Girl by Mary KubicaThe Good Girl by Mary Kubica
Published by Harlequin, MIRA on July 29, 2014
Genres: Adult, Mystery, Thriller
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
Buy on Amazon

"I've been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don't know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she's scared. But I will." 

Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn't show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, at first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia's life. 

Colin's job was to abduct Mia as part of a wild extortion plot and deliver her to his employers. But the plan takes an unexpected turn when Colin suddenly decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota, evading the police and his deadly superiors. Mia's mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them, but no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family's world to shatter. 

An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a compulsive debut that reveals how even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems…

I thought I had this one figured out from the very beginning. And unfortunately, I was right. This book reminded me a whole lot of another book (whose title I will not reveal, as not to spoil any plot points). I was hoping it was going to go in some other direction that would totally throw me off, but there were no surprises. The book is told from the view points of three characters: Mia’s kidnapper, her mom, and the detective who is trying to solve the case. It also switches from “before” and “after”. In the advanced copy I was reading, there was no differentiation when the character changed.  This could be pretty jarring, because it would sometimes happen within the same paragraph. I would immediately realize it, but it made the book really difficult to get into in the beginning. I have checked, and in the final version, each section is labeled with the character’s name and “before” or “after”.  This would’ve made it SO much easier than having to figure out where and when we were each time! Another thing that made this book less than enjoyable for me was that I just didn’t like any of the characters. I didn’t hate them (except for Mia’s dad – he was a real piece of work); in fact, most of them had something about them that made them at least a little sympathetic. I just didn’t like any of them enough to actually care.  Gabe Hoffman, the detective, was the most likeable, but I didn’t feel like I actually knew him, outside of him working on the case.  And as a mom, I felt for Mia’s mother, but after all her years of being a lousy parent, it was hard to feel too bad for her. The Good Girl by Mary Kubica is supposed to be a suspenseful thriller with a shocking ending, but for me, it was just a series of events that I saw coming the entire time.  It didn’t feel original, and I never felt any urgency about what was going to happen. I suspect this was partially due to the “before” and “after” taking away some of the suspense. I was disappointed with the predictable ending, and for once, I wish I would’ve been proven wrong.

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Jessica’s addiction to books began at age 4, going on weekly trips to the library with her mom. After being a young fan of Sweet Valley High and The Baby-Sitters Club, she discovered the thrill of reading a book that made her want to leave the light on and check under the bed. Her all-time favorite author is Stephen King, but she will read just about anything! Jessica never leaves home without her e-reader, and considers it the best gift she ever received. Her other hobbies include running and going to Disney World as often as possible.


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