Friday, July 29, 2022

Book Review: The Other Girlfriend

By Sara Steven

She loves him…

Lizzie Green once loved Tom Murphy with a passion that bordered on obsession. All she wanted was his love to be returned. Then one night something terrible happened and Tom left Lizzie broken hearted. She swore she would never let him hurt her again….

She loves him not.

Now, ten years later, Tom turns up on Lizzie’s doorstep still as charming as ever. Lizzie knows he still has the power to break her heart and destroy her life again. But Lizzie can’t say no to him….

Can she? (Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads)

The Other Girlfriend was the type of psychological thriller I can get behind. Some thrillers are really in your face about it–there are blatant obstacles and over-the-top moments that are fun for the genre, but I prefer the stories that are more subtle, because you never know what’s going to happen next or what might be lurking around the corner. That’s how it felt with the dynamic between Lizzie and Tom. Is Tom back in Lizzie’s life because he missed her? Or is there something more sinister involved?

I’m not always a big fan of flashbacks, but in this case, the flashbacks provided within the story show us the past for Lizzie and her friends, and the fast forward to the current time really helped the reader get a sense for how much Lizzie had changed from her uni years to now. It also provided the backdrop for why she’s changed–and why she has become ‘Beth,’ the new persona she’s taken on in order to live her life as best she can, despite the past. With Tom’s reappearance, she can’t help but miss the young man she remembers, but his presence threatens the safety and security she’s put in place for herself. She’s equal parts excited and anxious, and Alex Stone really did a great job of showing that constant tug-of-war that Lizzie has within herself.  

Granted, this is fiction, but I feel there are some relatable moments within this story. Many of us can remember a time when there might have been someone in our lives who we thought the world of, but there were others who protested our vision of that person. Sometimes you’re too close to a situation to really see it for what it is, and that is what Lizzie experiences. That kind of scenario only drew me further in, because I’ve been there. 

I wondered what kind of choices Lizzie would make in the end, and if it would include Tom or not. The ending did not disappoint. The Other Girlfriend was the perfect subtle psychological thriller.

Thanks to Rachel's Random Resources for the book in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK * Amazon US

Alex Stone, originally an accountant from the West Midlands, is now a psychological suspense writer based in Dorset. This beautiful and dramatic coastline is the inspiration and setting for her novels. She was awarded the Katie Fforde Bursary in 2019 and her debut thriller, The Perfect Daughter, was published by Boldwood in October 2021.

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