Pretty Is- Maggie Mitchell*

Pretty Is by Maggie Mitchell. Published in the UK in mass market April 2016.:

My last book review of the year is of a complete and utter cracker- it’s one of those books that surprised me with how much I enjoyed it.

The novel is told from the point of view of two narrators: Lois, a New York professor who specialises in 18th century literature and Chloe, a C-list Hollywood actress trying to forget her roots in rural Nebraska. So far, so unconnected, right? Until you realise that these two women were abducted together as twelve-year-olds and kept by the mysterious and aloof Zed. Nearly twenty years later, they find themselves back together and they have to confront their secret past.

On the surface, it’s a novel that sounds like many others, but believe me when I say that it has masses of potential. It’s a novel in three parts, one of those an extract from Lois’ novel (written under a pseudonym and sold as fiction) which gives further detail about what really happened in the summer the girls were kept- not entirely unwillingly- in a cabin in the woods. It could easily have been a schlocky horror novel, but it’s not at all. There’s tension in the right places and I was eager to read on; I was hooked at an early stage. And, do you know what? The ending worked, too! So often, these types of novels end with a whimper, but not the case here.

Pretty Is isn’t out in paperback (but you can get it on Kindle and in hardback, if you can’t wait!) for a few months yet, but if you like intelligent psychological thrillers, this is definitely one to add to your list.


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