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Wednesday, February 6, 2019

#ATBR2019 Review: The Dead Ex by Jane Corry @janecorryauthor @PamelaDormanBks

The Dead Ex
by Jane Corry

Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Publish Date: February 5, 2019
368 Pages
Genre: Thriller

One man's disappearance throws four women's lives into chaos--who will survive?

Vicki works as an aromatherapist, healing her clients out of her home studio with her special blends of essential oils. She's just finishing a session when the police arrive on her doorstep--her ex-husband David has gone missing. Vicki insists she last saw him years ago when they divorced, but the police clearly don't believe her. And her memory's hardly reliable--what if she did have something to do with it?

Meanwhile, Scarlet and her mother Zelda are down on their luck, and at eight years old, Scarlet's not old enough to know that the "game" her mother forces her to play is really just a twisted name for dealing drugs. Soon, Zelda is caught, and Scarlet is forced into years of foster care--an experience that will shape the rest of her life . . .

David's new wife, Tanya, is the one who reported him missing, but what really happened on the night of David's disappearance? And how can Vicki prove her innocence, when she's not even sure of it herself? The answer lies in the connection among these four women--and the one person they can't escape.

My Review:

Almost exactly two years ago, I read Corry's My Husband's Wife. Sometimes I like to go back to my review of the first book I've read by an author just to see what my first impression may have been.  Seems I'm a bit on the same side with both books! (Never judge a book by its cover and never judge an author by the first book you read by them, good, bad or in the middle!)

Here's what I love about Corry's writing - it's completely addicting and the short chapters leave you needing to get to the next one to see what's going to happen and you just read chapter after chapter after chapter until you've lost all sense of time.  I know I've stayed up later than I needed to the last couple of nights because of this story.

This book starts off strong.  We get multiple POVS, but the main POV is Vicky and she's QUITE the unreliable narrator.  However, while in My Husband's Wife I felt the uplead was a bit slow, the ending is what flew.  The opposite, for me, is what happened with The Dead Ex.  The beginning and middle are on fire... however, the ending didn't quite give the pow that I thought the first two parts would bring.  I also felt the epilogue was a bit unnecessary.  While it did add that "oh wow, person, ok  then **raised eyebrow**", I don't know if it was needed for any type of shock value.

I do think that my complete lack of interest in essential oils and their helpful properties made some of the book a bit eye glazed.  That's just a me thing though.  I do love the way Corry brings together all of these characters together towards the end... this is definitely a crazy character laden story and I love that.  I don't think I really felt myself feeling engaged with any of them, but I will say I was fascinated with Scarlet's chapters above all else.  Uff, this girl. ❤

Corry is a fun thriller writer to read.  I think the way she keeps you engaged to each story line with each word and how the full circle brings the characters together is something that will keep me picking up her books.


Jessica's Review:

I'm a little behind on picking up some Jane Corry books, I know, I know! I have her two others (Blood Sisters and My Husband's Wife) on my shelves, but this was my first time diving in. I've heard so many great things about her writing and I was not disappointed.

We get an unreliable narrator in Vicki, an aromatherapist that finds the police on her doorstep when her ex-husband goes missing. She hasn't seen him since the divorce, so they clearly have their information wrong. Or is her memory not as good as it used to be? Wouldn't Tanya, his new wife, make the most sense?

There are so many questions and Corry weaves together the stories of these four prominent female characters in Vicki, Tanya, Scarlet, and her mother Zelda. How are they all connected? What really happened? Plenty of unknowns and Corry brings everything together in the end for us, including an epilogue.

THE DEAD EX by Jane Corry was a solid thriller and kept a consistent pacing throughout  you can't go wrong with those short chapters! She knows how to draw you into the minds and lives of the characters while still keeping things evenly between character and plot driven. I will definitely be going back to her previous releases!

3.5/5 stars

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