Monday, April 10, 2017

Review: The Fifth Letter

The Fifth Letter
by Nicola Moriary

Why did you choose this book? A ‘friends’ story with an interesting synopsis  
When did you read this book? March 2017
Who should read this book? Readers who enjoy friends stories with drama
Source: library ebook
My Rating: ✰✰✰✰   4 Stars

Here is a synopsis of The Fifth Letter from Goodreads

A fun vacation game turns destructive, exposing dark secrets, deeply buried grudges, and a shocking betrayal in Nicola Moriarity’s intriguing debut.

Four friends . . .

Joni, Deb, Eden, and Trina have been best friends since high school, sharing a bond that has seen them through their teenage years and into adulthood. But now, time and circumstance is starting to pull them apart as careers, husbands, and babies get in the way. As their yearly vacation becomes less of a priority—at least for three of the women—how can Joni find a way to draw the four of them back together?

Four secrets . . .

During a laughter and wine-filled night, the women dare one another to write anonymous letters, spilling their deepest, darkest secrets. But the fun game turns devastating, exposing cracks in their lives and the friendships they share. Each letter is a dark confession revealing shocking information. A troubled marriage? A substance abuse problem? A secret pregnancy? A heartbreaking diagnosis?

Five letters . . .

Late on one of their last nights together, after the other three have gone to bed, Joni notices something in the fireplace—a burnt, crumpled, nearly destroyed, sheet of paper that holds the most shattering revelation of all. It is a fifth letter—a hate-filled rant that exposes a vicious, deeply hidden grudge that has festered for decades. But who wrote it? Which one of them has seethed with resentment all these years? What should Joni do?

Best friends are supposed to keep your darkest secrets. But the revelations Joni, Deb, Eden and Trina have shared will ripple through their lives with unforeseen consequences . . . and things will never be the same.

My Review

I’d read the synopsis of this one and it sounded interesting — I always enjoy stories about friends. A few days later I learned the author is the little sister of one of my favorite authors, Liane Moriarty, and I knew I had to read this one. I wasn’t disappointed. This was a quick read that I probably could have finished in one sitting had I not waited until almost midnight to start!

The story is about four friends who’d met in elementary school and maintained their friendship through the years. It is time for their annual ‘girls week’ vacation together, and this year Joni, as the only childless member of the group, is feeling left out. She proposes that they each create and print a letter sharing a secret, and hopes that this will bring the group closer together. The other women reluctantly agree with this project. This is where I had reservations about the story. First, I’m pretty sure I would not have agreed to this arrangement and second, if I had agreed, there are plenty of innocuous secrets I could have told. However, that is not the choice these women made and the result was a lot of hurt feelings.

Despite my reservations I enjoyed this story. The mystery of who authored the fifth letter kept my attention until the very end. I also really appreciate that the author gave me an epilogue and allowed me a glimpse of the future. There was a cute twist in the story that I didn’t see coming, and I really enjoyed.

If you enjoy sister Liane Moriarty’s books, you will enjoy this one. Bookclubs will have fun with this one; both reading and discussing! I haven’t been able to find discussion questions, but you can visit the publisher’s website to read an excerpt or listen to a sample of the book.
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1 comment:

  1. I was tempted to pick this up just because I like Liane Moriarty, but I wasn't sure it would be as good. I'm glad to hear that you liked it and might give it a chance after reading your review :)