Monday, January 7, 2019

Review: The Elizas by Sara Shepard

Author: Sara Shepard
Publisher: Atria
Date of publication: April 2018

When debut novelist Eliza Fontaine is found at the bottom of a hotel pool, her family at first assumes that it’s just another failed suicide attempt. But Eliza swears she was pushed, and her rescuer is the only witness.

Desperate to find out who attacked her, Eliza takes it upon herself to investigate. But as the publication date for her novel draws closer, Eliza finds more questions than answers. Like why are her editor, agent, and family mixing up events from her novel with events from her life? Her novel is completely fictional, isn’t it?

The deeper Eliza goes into her investigation while struggling with memory loss, the closer her life starts to resemble her novel until the line between reality and fiction starts to blur and she can no longer tell where her protagonist’s life ends and hers begins.

When The Elizas opens,  Eliza has just been found at the bottom of a pool, in what her family believes is another suicide attempt. When she wakes up, she insists she was pushed.  Eliza can't swim and she thinks this was an attempt to kill her.  She has a novel coming out that her family doesn't want her to publish.  Soon the lines between what is in her novel and real life begin to blur.

One of the best types of books to read is one with an unreliable narrator.  The Elizas features one of the best unreliable narrators that I have ever read.  I spent much of the book wondering if Eliza was sane or not. She has major gaps in her memory.  She isn't exactly likable, She's prickly and rude but I ended up rooting for her.  There was a little bit of a side romance with Desmond  that I could have done without though.  I'm not sure I felt any chemistry between them.  

The book is told through Elizas point of view and through excerpts from her novel about Dot.  As the story progresses, it's hard to tell which of the story lines is the real one. The pacing was slow at times, but at about the halfway mark it really gets moving along.   I loved the twist at the end.  It was a perfect way to end the book.  I do recommend this one.  It's a stand alone and definitely an adult thriller.

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