What Lies Between Us - John Marrs

After a complete betrayal of trust Nina now has free rein to control Maggie's life. It was agreed that Maggie needed to repay Nina for her actions and ensure their bond as mother and daughter is mended. But, can you fix what has never been whole in the first place?


Needing a good fix of mystery I decided to pick this up, John Marrs has been more prominent in the modern culture ether as of late due to the dramatisation of his novel 'The One' which is streaming on Netflix. Being overall disappointed with the show itself I wanted to see if Marr's writing has any sway in convincing me to pick up his work despite my feelings toward the TV series. Turns out, I was too quick to judge and 'What Lies Between Us' instantly had me hooked in by the creepiness and captivating personality of the two main characters.


For those who don't know, and I suppose not many of you will unless you've seen me read in person, but I have a journal in which I write my thoughts about each book I read. Whether I love it, tolerate it, or completely loathe it, I keep a page of notes to ensure I can still remember my thoughts at the time of reading. My first note for this book?


"Nina is so creepy."


Within pages I could tell something was underlying Nina's relationship with Maggie, but not just in a strained mother/daughter way, in more of a "struggling to keep a grip on reality" kind of way. Marrs is easily one of the best tension writers I've come across and kept me engaged with every word, the pace was fast, cliffhangers were perfectly timed and the revelations made my head spin. So much was revealed that each chapter offered the promise of something as unbelievable as what I'd just read.


However, you may have skipped to the end of this post and seen my rating "but Naomi, why is it only a 4 star review, and not 5? You seem to have loved it!" Correct! I did love it, which is why, in the last few chapters, I became frustrated. This had the promise of being a new favourite read, one to recommend to everyone and anyone, but the ending... what can I say? It didn't disappoint me, it was clever and the perfect way to show Nina that karma is a bitch, but, I just thought "after all that? This is how it ends?" I discussed it with some other readers who were in my position, who loved every word and page right up until the ending and we couldn't get our heads round it. In a way, it was the perfect ending to prompt discussion between us and actually, I couldn't see it ending any other way without ruining the progress Marrs had made with the characters. I think I'm just being a sulky child who can't grasp that actually, this was for the best, but in my mind it was too immediate and left with a "WTF" face for a couple days.


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