BOOK REVIEW: Perfect Little Lives by Amber and Danielle Brown


Title: Perfect Little Lives
Author: Amber & Danielle Brown
Publication: December 5, 2023
Publisher: Graydon House
Genre: Thriller
Pages: 368


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SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)

Simone’s mother was murdered when she was thirteen. When her father was convicted, everything changed. Overnight, Simone went from living in a wealthy white neighborhood to scraping by.

Ten years later, Simone has given up on her dreams and lives a quiet life, writing book reviews and getting serious with her boyfriend. But with a true crime documentarian hounding her for a scoop and a surprise encounter with her childhood next-door neighbor, Hunter, the past seems set on haunting her. After Hunter reveals that his father and her mother had a years-long affair, Simone is determined to find out who killed her mother.

Simone is convinced that all evidence points to Hunter’s father, a renowned judge who had everything to lose if his affair—and his nascent love child—came to light. Playing the game from all sides, Simone enlists Hunter’s help in her investigation into his family—whether he realizes it or not. But is she so desperate for closure that she’ll risk imploding her carefully rebuilt life?


**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**

Full disclosure: I did not finish this book. I got pretty far and I likely will finish it at some point just because I’ve made it so far, but I was not able to finish and I will tell you why.

Now normally if I do not finish a book I give it a 1-star review, no questions asked. However, this book got an extra star because I feel like it could have been great, but was missing key parts. My first issue was that it sometimes felt like I was reading a mystery/thriller, while other times I felt I was reading a book about a toxic romance. I do not understand the little jabs thrown in at men constantly. I’m all for powerful women and knowing what they want, but it almost felt like the authors had a bone to pick with men and were using it as a side plot, which I did not enjoy.

My second complaint and likely the most important was that the story just did not flow nicely and did not keep me interested. Like I said, I have not finished, but I’m almost done and I will finish because I have my own set of rules about books and how much time I have put into it. Perfect Little Lives had a good plot idea but was poorly executed. I need to be hooked from the first page and kept just enough in the dark that keep me turning pages. It was more of a chore to pick this one up than an urge to know what would happen next.

While this book was not for me, I would be very curious to read other books, or future books, by Amber and Danielle Brown to see if I like one more. I strongly encourage others to check it out and see what they think. Just because a book was not for me does not mean it’s not for someone else.

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