Friday, June 21, 2019

Book Review: Mine

By Jami Deise

When the Glenn Close/Michael Douglas thriller Fatal Attraction came out, I was in college, and word was that this movie and the AIDS crisis would stop cheating husbands forever. Spoiler alert: It didn’t. Ironically, I saw the movie with a friend whose boyfriend was dealing with a stalker of his own. At least, that’s what my friend thought. She didn’t know that I knew the stalker in question – and the "stalker," who was actually a nice, normal gal herself, told me that she was in love with a guy with a mentally unstable girlfriend, and he was just waiting for the right moment to break it off so they could be together in the open. I figured out pretty easily that he was lying to both of them, that he wasn’t worth it. I lost track of that little love triangle. I hope my friends eventually came to their senses.

I hadn’t thought about that episode in years, but reading Courtney Cole’s latest offering, Mine, brought it all back. Mine is about two women involved with the same man: Tessa has been married to Ethan for over twenty years and has three children with him; Lindsay is his 26-year-old mistress. When Tessa discovers Lindsay’s existence via an old iPad of Ethan’s, she lures her rival to her Florida beach mansion in the middle of a hurricane and tricks her to handcuffing herself to the bed.

What follows is a fast-paced page turner between both points of view, as the women fight over who has the stronger claim to Ethan. As the hurricane rages and the power goes out, Lindsay’s story also includes flashbacks to the beginning and progression of her relationship with Ethan. As Lindsay taunts Tessa with Ethan’s claims that Tessa cared only about her career and her children, Tessa wonders who the bigger liar is: Ethan or Lindsay? And does she bear responsibility for Ethan seeking attention elsewhere?

Clocking in at about two hours, Mine reads like a movie, and could easily be adapted into one. Although as a beach resident of Florida I had some quibbles with the hurricane details (rich people like Ethan and Tessa don’t have manual hurricane shutters, for instance), overall I was hooked. Both women are fully three-dimensional, emotional, and empathetic as victims of a man’s self-centeredness. The ending, while not a complete wrap-up, is fulfilling.

Just in time for the summer, Mine will make a great beach read. But its message is appropriate for any season: If you only have half a man, he’s not worth any fraction of you.

Thanks to Gallery for the book in exchange for an honest review.

More by Courtney Cole:

1 comment:

Burma Turner said...

This sounds amazing!