MYSTERY

Pretty Things

Random. Apr. 2020. 496p. ISBN 9780525479123. $28. SUSPENSE
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Brown’s fourth novel (after Watch Me Disappear) is a riveting tale of secrets and deception. Nina Ross is a grifter, following in her con artist mother’s footsteps after her bright future failed to materialize. Vanessa Liebling is beautiful and rich, and a top Instagram influencer. She is also the older sister of Nina’s teenage boyfriend Benny, a relationship that was shattered by his bullying father, setting Nina and her mother on the move again. A decade later, their lives are brought together by Nina’s biggest con yet—the prospect of revenge only adds spice to her plans. But when Nina’s new boyfriend and coconspirator Lachlan changes the plan, Vanessa and Nina become reluctant partners in a fight for their respective freedoms. Moving back and forth between Nina and Vanessa’s perspectives, the story is a slow burn that comes to an explosive conclusion.
VERDICT With flawless suspense, masterly storytelling, and a plot that hits all the notes of our Instagram world perfectly, this novel is a must-read. Recommended for readers of Miranda Beverly-Whittemore’s Bittersweet or Kathleen Barber’s Follow Me. [See Prepub Alert, 10/14/19.]

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