Review of Pretty Baby

A chance encounter sparks an unrelenting web of lies in this stunning new psychological thriller from national bestselling author Mary Kubica

She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can't get the girl out of her head...

Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family's objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.

Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow's past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she's willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.


Mary Kubica has an amazing writing style. I could start her books without knowing she was the author and figure it out quickly. Pretty Baby was our December book club pick.

Likes:
  • I love that dark, internal writing she does. You really see into a person’s head and the intensity of their feelings.
  • I loved reading Heidi’s POV and then Chris’s. Marriages so often fail because there isn’t communication and honesty. Heidi and Chris were on two different pages in life and neither really sat down and took time to explain their feelings to each other.
  • Willow, WOW. As you dig into her layers and learn her story, you can’t help feel sorry for her, but also wish that she would rise up above her circumstances. She was smart enough but had such low self-esteem and was terrified. It is easy to think of what you would do in her place, without ever really having to experience it.
  • I know something was up with Ruby from the beginning, but I liked how her part of the story developed.
Gripes:
  • The storyline was interesting but I felt like there was no real climax and conclusion. I gave the book three stars because I felt like the final action was stagnant. The book just ended. I guess I was looking for something bigger, something more “Gone Girl” style, so it could be my fault that I built up the story in my head instead of letting it play out on its own.


https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23638955-pretty-baby?from_search=true&search_version=service

8 comments

  1. I love psychological thrillers, but too bad there was no climax. That sounds disappointing!

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  2. I have this on my TBR. Unfortunately that ending makes me a little nervous. I am one of those readers who can get really jazzed over a just okay read if the ending rocks my world, as well as really annoyed with a great book that flops in the end.
    Thanks for your review.

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  3. I feel like I've heard the author before. Maybe I own one of her books. To lazy to look. Lol. I'm getting more into thrillers or I'm trying to.

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  4. I feel like I've heard the author before. Maybe I own one of her books. To lazy to look. Lol. I'm getting more into thrillers or I'm trying to.

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  5. I started this and stopped. Just couldn't get into it. I have a feeling it's going to let me down--so I'm not gonna bother.

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  6. I like it when the writing really places you at the head of the main character.. Glad to know that you enjoy this :)

    czai @ the Blacksheep Project

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  7. I'm not familiar with this author, but it sounds like an interesting premise for a thriller. It's a pity it didn't really have a climax (you kind of need one for those!) OR a conclusion. It's so jarring when books just end :/

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  8. I LOVED Kubica's debut, and I am so excited to read this one (I'm kind of surprised I haven't gotten to it yet). I'm a little bummed you didn't love this one, but I am still going to give it a go at some point I think.

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I'd love to hear what you thought of the book or others you think I will like! Please share your thoughts! Thank you for the thought, but I am not participating in awards.