A REESE WITHERSPOON HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB PICK WITH OVER ONE MILLION COPIES SOLD!
"Filled with envy, deception, and power, it’s a great reading escape. And there is a thrilling twist at the end!!" —Reese Witherspoon
“Will keep you up. In a ‘can’t put it down’ way. It’s ‘The Talented Mr. Ripley’ with XX chromosomes.”—The Skimm
“Deliciously duplicitous. . . . equally as twisty, spellbinding, and addictive as Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl or Paula Hawkins’s The Girl on the Train.”—Library Journal (starred review)
Amber Patterson is fed up. She’s tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more—a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted.
To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne—a socialite and philanthropist—and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale.
Amber’s envy could eat her alive . . . if she didn't have a plan. Amber uses Daphne’s compassion and caring to insinuate herself into the family’s life—the first step in a meticulous scheme to undermine her. Before long, Amber is Daphne’s closest confidante, traveling to Europe with the Parrishes and their lovely young daughters, and growing closer to Jackson. But a skeleton from her past may undermine everything that Amber has worked towards, and if it is discovered, her well-laid plan may fall to pieces.
With shocking turns and dark secrets that will keep you guessing until the very end, The Last Mrs. Parrish is a fresh, juicy, and utterly addictive thriller from a diabolically imaginative talent.
Liv Constantine is the pen name of sisters Lynne Constantine and Valerie Constantine. Lynne and Valerie are national and international bestselling authors with over one million copies sold worldwide. Their books have been translated into 28 languages, are available in 33 countries, and are in development for both television and film. Their books have been praised by USA Today, The Sunday Times, People Magazine, and Good Morning America, among many others. Their debut novel, THE LAST MRS. PARRISH, is a Reese Witherspoon Book Club selection. Visit Liv at www.livconstantine.com
This is the first book in a long time that I've actually HATED.
There are a number of reasons why and some are hard to talk about without giving important things away. I'll start with what I can safely say. All spoilers have been hidden.
Firstly, this book is so slow and boring. Especially in the first half where we stay inside the mind of the despicable con-artist, Amber Patterson, as she plants herself into the life of Daphne Parrish and tries to steal her rich husband. There are a good two hundred pages of lunch dates, designer dresses, charity events, and Amber hating every single person around her.
Look, I love complex, selfish, unlikable characters. I don't believe, in general, that anyone is merely good or bad. Most people are screwed-up, flawed, and jealous at times. It's a shitty world out there and I truly believe most personalities are made through socialization and nurture, not born. BUT Amber is insufferable. She is horrible to literally everyone, and for no reason. She has to make snide comments (mentally) about the weight of her coworker, and think to herself how much easier it was for Daphne's sister, who grew up with and eventually died from cystic fibrosis.
I only continued reading the slow, boring narrative because I knew something had to be coming. I also have a theory as to why the authors made her so one-dimensional and horrible, but that will have to come later under the spoiler tag.
And, sure enough, we reach the halfway point and the book shifts. The blurb already tells us to expect "shocking turns and dark secrets", though I don't personally think it was that shocking. For one thing, the book's tagline "Some women get everything. Some women get everything they deserve." tells us that someone is going to get what they deserve so, come on, is it really that hard to imagine where it's going? Maybe it also doesn't help that I recently read .
Now we're into spoiler territory, so most of this will be hidden. But here's where I got really pissed.
A slow book that still keeps me reading to the end can usually get two stars from me, but the slowness combined with a message that left a really bad taste means I can't and do not want to give it more than one star.
I wish the publishers hadn’t stuffed this novel into the psychological-thriller genre just because that’s where all the cool kids are, but had instead been honest about what this book is: a dark romance meets women’s fiction meets soap opera intrigue with a terrible, TERRIBLE message.
This level of dramatic soap-opera nutty-ness is just not my thing. It lacks humour and humanity, and is overpopulated with silly dialogue and tropes that feel like a reenactment. Not to mention, the internal misogyny that permeates the entire theme gets my feminist hackles up.
(This could get mildly spoiler-y because I’m going to rant, so if you’re super excited to read this, here’s my takeaway: Don’t waste your time with this, unless you’re cool with domestic abuse and the idea that it can be deserved. Otherwise, read on!)
So, this is pretty boring. It’s slow with dull scenes and so overtly dramatic in its boring elements that it becomes comical and cheesy. Ohhhhhh more rich people events with wildly cliché conversation? More descriptions of fancy clothes and designer labels and expensive underwear and boats and bikinis and hot bodies? Please, please, tell me again what else these people are spending their excessive amounts of money on!
For the first third of the book, we follow Amber Patterson as she enacts her plan to steal someone’s rich, powerful husband. Amber is a one-dimensional twat waffle who is absolutely agonizing to read. She’s a hateful, conniving con artist for seemingly no real reason other than she grew up poor and believes she deserves better, and the only way to get “better” is with buttloads of money.
She has zero redeeming qualities, not even a modicum of a sympathetic trait. She’s absolutely spiteful in her self-righteous belief that she could be a better rich asshole than all the other rich assholes.
Amber teaches herself about everything that a cultured person would apparently know. She reads The Odyssey and becomes an amateur sommelier and learns about real estate and art and hedge funds. You’d think that someone who is that driven and smart would aspire to be like a CEO or something. But no, Amber just wants to be a rich wife, because that’s the kind of thing women strive for here.
Then there's Daphne Parrish, the woman whose husband Amber is intent on stealing. Daphne, from Amber’s perspective, has it all. From the beautiful kids the nanny takes care of, to the closet full of designer clothes, the fleet of cars, the private chef and the estate-sized mansion and expensive vacations; down to the perfect, powerful, wealthy husband who provides it all and who is, of course, gorgeous and every woman wants him - Mr. Jackson Parrish.
Listen, Elon Musk might be able to buy himself hair but he can’t make himself hot. That’s the balance of the universe.
Underneath the opulence and money, Jackson is a controlling, abusive, waste of oxygen and Daphne needs to escape her marriage.
Up until this point, I was willing to give this book 3 stars, call it just so-so and kind of Lifetime movie-ish and move on with my life. Except, in the last third of the book, the tagline really starts to reveal its true meaning.
"Some women get everything. Some women get everything they deserve."
What Daphne deserves is to be free of Jackson. To regain control of her life, the lives of her children and move on from the prison she is living in, even if she has “everything.” Okay, great. Agreed. You can’t put a price on freedom.
But in order for Daphne to escape her personal hell, Amber must take her place in her abusive marriage. It's the ol' Indiana Jones switch-a-roo but with wives.
And we, as the readers, are supposed to want this switch. We’re supposed to cheer on Daphne as she plots another woman's abuse. This is why the authors created such a one-dimensional, unsympathetic shit of a character in Amber - so that when Daphne’s “clever” plan succeeds and Amber becomes the new Mrs. Jackson Parrish, we, the reader, say: “Yes, good! She's finally getting what she deserves! Be careful what you wish for! The grass isn't always greener, you dumb bitch!”
We’re supposed to want a woman to be a victim of domestic abuse because that is apparently a just punishment for a woman being selfish and fraudulent, and in some ways, determined.
Are you fucking kidding? This is for realsies?!
I could see this coming, but I hoped it wasn’t true. I kept thinking maybe Daphne and Amber would find a way to join forces to destroy Jackson together and I would end up back at a three-star rating. But noooooooooo.
I don’t care how awful Amber is, or how many terrible things she did in pursuit of her goal, domestic violence is not a thing to wish on someone. Sorry, but no. And I'm not "seeing everything through the lens of feminism," or whatever excuse some people want to throw at me. We're talking about RAPE and ABUSE - this is not regular comeuppance or karma that anyone can earn. This is very specific and abhorrent. I’m stunned that an active choice was made by the authors to subliminally tell readers that it’s fun and entertaining to witness an unlikeable character become a victim of abuse and rape.
Anyone who gave this book 4 or 5 stars, I'm just suggesting a quick internal rundown as to why this “twist” didn’t bother you. I mean, I’m not here to judge you and I don't think less of you, but... just think about it. Critical reading - that's all I'm asking. Whatever opinion you come to after that, that's your business and I'm not going to argue. But, just consider the misogyny wrapped up in a shiny, pretty cover.
Because, honestly, for as cheesy and soap-opera-y this novel is, what Amber "deserves" and the resolution to Daphne's problems, is fucking DARK, and kind of fucked up. As someone who was in an abusive relationship for longer than I like to remember, a narrative that thumps its chest to say that some women deserve to be victims of abuse because they should have been better people - that is never going to land with me.
It takes a lot for me to hand out one star. I save those for flaming piles of shit. But, I’m making an exception in this case. I think totally hated this very strongly, just on principle.
‘Cause Amber Patterson is on the prowl and liable to steal your entire life right out from under your nose.
And this time her envious glare is set upon the beautiful and unsuspecting Daphne and her filthy rich, disgustingly successful husband, Jackson.
I’ll be the first to admit that I love a good cast of whack job characters, but there’s certain criteria I feel necessary for their levels of insanity to work:
- The characters must feel fleshed-out and human. - They should have layers and appear altered when viewed from different angles. (No one is all “one” thing.) - They have to be convincing enough to make even the “unbelievable” seem believable. (No matter how absurd a theory may seem, good writing will make me a believer.)
While the characters here certainly nailed psychopathy, I felt they lacked the depth and dimension needed for me to buy what they were selling, although I’m not saying the ride wasn't fun. It just felt a bit “put-on” and inauthentic at times.
This plot is divided into three parts with alternating focus, which I thought worked well. The first section felt slightly repetitive and was my least enjoyable, but the rest of the book had me flipping eagerly through its pages, anxiously awaiting reveals.
As for the twists—they seemed more edgy than surprising, which isn't a bad thing. The ending left me a little divided for reasons that are too spoilery to mention, but since this is fiction, I can stand to give a high-five to good ol’ book-karma for doing her job with efficiency and vigor and a sweet twist of irony as a cherry-topper.
Overall, a stellar concept that, with a tighter execution, I could have easily 5-starred. I can definitely see this becoming a movie; it certainly reads like one. I do think many readers will enjoy the compulsive nature of this one and easily soar through this story. Enjoy!
*Traveling Friends Read*
Book Stats: ▪ Genre/Category: Psychological Thriller/Mystery/Suspense ▪ Characters: Deliciously Unhinged but largely one-dimensional ▪ Plot: An envious woman greedily sets out to steal the life and husband of a new “friend”. ▪ Writing: Straightforward. Fluid. ▪ POV: 1st & 3rd Person Perspectives: Alternating Heroines ▪ Cliffhanger: None. Standalone
I’ve had a lucky streak of great books lately and I’m happy to say that this was another terrific read. “The Last Mrs. Parrish” was a very compelling psychological suspense novel.
“Some women get everything. Some women get everything they deserve”
Amber Patterson detests the rich and privileged women she sees at the gym, yet she would give anything to be one of them. She is tired of being poor – of feeling unimportant, and invisible. But Amber has a plan to change her life and it starts with...Daphne Parrish.
Daphne has it all....and Amber wants it.
Daphne feels like she finally has a friend who can really understand the loss she suffered. Amber offers to help out with a foundation that Daphne runs and she’s thrilled to have Amber’s help. Some of the other women aren’t so sure about Amber, but Daphne ignores their warnings as she grows even closer to Amber. But she has no idea what Amber is up too.
Spending holidays and even taking trips with the family, Amber has done her research and feels like things are going perfectly. However, she may have charmed Daphne but there’s still Jackson to win over.
“Daphne had been easy pickings, but Jackson was going to be a different matter entirely. He was going to require all of Amber’s cunning and ingenuity.”
Amber is positive that she’s finally going to have it all. SHE was going to be the one everyone looked at and admired. She was going to win this time.
But we don’t always see what people are thinking behind their big smiles and we don’t always know what goes on behind closed doors. And Amber’s past is full of things she doesn’t want anyone to find out.
Will her secrets get out and ruin her big plans? Will she finally get what she deserves?
The book is broken up into three parts. Part one is from Amber’s perspective. We learn about her plan to infiltrate the Parrish’s world. Part two is Daphne’s point of view. Part three was the best of all. Both perspectives come together leading up to a thrilling and very satisfying conclusion.
Although there were a few things that seemed a bit over the top, I didn’t really dwell on it as the story was so interesting. There was also a bit of repetition in part two. However, I think it was probably necessary in order to see Daphne’s view and get the full effect of what was going on.
I really enjoyed this novel. Amber was the perfect villain, someone readers will love to hate. Manipulative and calculating, you never knew what she was going to do next. Jackson Parrish, the high-powered real estate tycoon with the world at his fingertips. And then we have the beautiful and kind, Daphne Parrish, loving wife and mother.
I had a bit of an idea of what might be going on early on. But it may have been written that way intentionally. At any rate, it really didn’t interfere with my enjoyment of the story as I was curious to see if I was right and if I wasn’t, I was still excited to see where the story was going to go.
And the story didn’t let me down. There were plenty of twists that I did not see coming. I was completely absorbed in the story and found it hard to put down. This book was a bit longer than most suspense novels at almost 400 pages. But I didn’t feel like it was too much, it felt just right.
“The Last Mrs. Parrish” was an engrossing and addictive read, with a great plot and well-developed, diabolical characters. This really was a very impressive debut novel. A delicious story of jealousy, betrayal, and revenge.
The author Liv Constantine is actually the pen name of two sisters, Lynne Constantine and Valerie Constantine. Lynne and Valerie wrote this novel while living in different states, using both Skype and email. I’m excited to see what they come up with next!
Thank you HarperCollins for providing an advanced readers copy of this book for me to read in exchange for my honest review.
This is a fantastic book with only three characters. Husband, wife, and home-wrecker. It’s no spoiler to tell you that Amber Patterson is the home wrecker and a self-avowed woman on a mission. Motivated mostly by her wish to be tremendously wealthy, Amber is determined to OUTRIGHT steal Jackson Parrish away from his sweet, beautiful wife, Daphne. What ensues is unbelievably fun to read about. Deliciously wicked.
First, what I love about this book:
The story is entertaining and addictive! I couldn’t put it down. The writing is effortless, easy and flows at a naturally fast pace. The structure of the book is perfect. The first third is Amber’s POV, the second is Daphne’s and the third part is a bit of a combination conclusion. (I enjoyed Daphne’s section so much more than Amber’s!)
And, the best part, THE LAST MRS. PARRISH has one of the most satisfying endings to a story I’ve read in a long time!
What I don’t like:
This book is too long. Even though it reads fast for a 400 page book, there is too much fat. Where are those editors when you need one? For the first half of the book, we get an up close, continuous description of how the “one percent” lives and that starts to get tiring.
Ok, we get it, Jackson Parrish is super duper rich and buys very expensive clothes, shoes, and jewelry for Mrs. Parrish. If you’re into designer brand names, etc. you will enjoy reading about the trappings and joys of wealth. And that’s not a bad thing! But, if you tire of this part, persevere until the second half where the plot really picks up.
Aside from not really feeling a connection to the characters, there is also not any suspense in this book. There is a mild twist, but you will probably not be that surprised.
All of these negatives are only because my expectations were that this would be a “twisted, psychological thriller”. I mean, it says it right there on the book jacket.
It’s my opinion that this book is mis-categorized. I would call it women’s fiction (I hate “chick-lit”). It is VERY light on the psychological suspense and there is not a thriller vibe or shocking mystery to solve.
Overall, this is a very fun book to read, most people will love it and I’m betting it is going to be very popular.
The strange thing is….it is almost the exact same plot line from THE WIFE BETWEEN US by Greer Hendricks, which is the book I read just before this one. Caaaarazzzzy.
In contrast, THE WIFE BETWEEN US is a much darker, tighter, twisted story and I did give it all the stars. That book doesn’t come out until January 2018. I will post a review on http://www.booksbejeweled.com closer to publication.
THE LAST MRS. PARRISH is scheduled for US publication today, October 17. It has a gorgeous cover and I want to thank the lovely Chelsea Humphrey from http://www.thesuspenseisthrillingme.com for gifting it to me as part of a giveaway.
To be honest, I almost feel I am being generous with two stars, but then I did finish it, so I wouldn't think it right to give it an even lower rating. There was something about The Last Mrs. Parrish that made it a very easy read, but that just wasn't enough. My disappointment in the book really comes from my dislike for the characters, or at the very least my apathy towards them. Amber is despicable, but her bad personality is written so overtly there is no mystery, no build up of atmosphere to give the story some tension. The author tells us all about Amber's sneakiness, instead of just showing it,which ruins the suspense in my opinion. I could even get on board when the protagonist is unlikable, as long as there is some ambiguity, yet there was none of that here. Added to that, Amber's goal is really just to be rich, which is too superficial and not interesting enough to make her a compelling character. I did feel for Daphne, however I also felt her character was fairly bland and her part in the story not exciting. The mystery itself was so predictable that I kept thinking, "Is this it?" The book is also just shy of 400 pages, which is too long, given the rather minimal amount of actual plot. Though, as I say, the writing is easy and makes the book very readable, the author does make use of many a cliché and in several cases I thought, do people really talk/think like this? "She loved the feel of this singularly superior vehicle" - is just one example of awkward, unrealistic language, which I found to be a little irritating. I know I am being hard on this book and maybe unfairly so since many readers loved it, but after all the attention it received, I had hoped for something more exciting and more inventive than I got. All that being said, it's probably a decent vacation read, or even a book club read, because I imagine people could have a lot to say about this book. Unfortunately, it just wasn't for me.
WOW! What a fun ride that was! The only reason this book is not getting the full five stars is it was a bit slow to start.... but once it hit about 40% WOWZA things went sideways.... and I loved it!
I just read and reviewed The Wife Between Us and really enjoyed it.... however it is very similar to this book.... so I can’t help but compare and I’d have to say I enjoyed this book more..... and the reason for this is I adored and hated these characters so much....
Amber was the perfect girl you had to hate.... although I have to admit up until that first Twist I was rooting for her a tiny bit (don’t judge…😉) then we have Daphne... I can’t even tell you how I feel about Daphne because that would ruin things, but such a well developed character my feelings for her were all over the place throughout this book (I so much want to say something right now but I can’t🤫🤭)
Ugh! I am so jealous of you who have not already read this... you have such a wonderful treat ahead of you..... so just pick this book up sit back relax and enjoy the crazy ride! And keep in mind good things come to those who wait..... Think of the beginning of this book as that huge hill you go up on a roller coaster before things start going sideways and crazy.... it isn’t necessarily the best part of the ride, but it’s necessary to get you to that place where things go wild!
PS:And for those of you who have read this already that ending! Perfection🐢
I devoured this entire book over a lazy Sunday. It is extremely addictive. The writing flows beautifully, and the story grabs you and won't let go. I was dying to know exactly how this craziness would end, but now I'm kind of disappointed that it's over! I'm already planning on encouraging friends to give it a read so we can discuss it. It's pure scandalous fun.
Amber Patterson isn't happy with her life. She's moved up in her job, but can still only afford a small apartment in a good area. She can't buy herself the luxurious things that she wants... the things that will undoubtedly make life better. That's why she has a plan... and her plan involves the unlucky Daphne and Jackson Parrish. Earn the trust of the wife, become a fixture in her inner circle, and then take her husband. Rich enough to buy anything Amber's little heart desires and movie-star handsome, he's an obvious choice. Eager to become indispensable to Daphne, she stacks up lie after lie about her past in order to make her think they have a kinship.
As she becomes closer and closer to Daphne, she starts to become a bit disheartened by her relationship with her husband. They seem happy... and most importantly, Jackson only seems to have eyes for his beautiful wife. However, Amber is just not the type that gives up easily. She's in it for the long game... those designer clothes, that private plane, those dream vacations... but not necessarily his two children.
Over the day I read this book, I was obsessed with it. I loved reading about the crazy amount of wealth the Parrishes have, Amber's manipulation, the relationship between husband and wife, and even laughing over the antics of the two little girls. The perspective shift in part two really added something extra to the book. I thought I would get bored rehashing certain things from a different point of view, but it was actually fascinating. I'm giving this one 4.5 "couldn't put it down" stars.".
The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine is a 2017 Harperluxe publication.
Slick, shrewd, and wickedly devious-
Daphne meets Amber at the gym, where they discover they share a terrible tragedy in common- the death of a beloved sister due to Cystic Fibrosis. The women, though from very different worlds, form a close bond.
Before long, Amber has become Daphne’s confidante, while also working for her CF foundation, and even helps Mr. Parrish went he needs an assistant.
But, Amber has plans, big plans, and in order to achieve her goals, she will walk over and step on anyone in her path- even Daphne-
This story was chilling, clever, and sinfully entertaining. Amber gets to set the pace in the first half of the book as she describes her cunning, and very manipulative nature. She’s not the timid, sweet, impressionable woman she appears to be.
Once she has clued us in on her diabolic plans, and once she has seemingly gotten what she came for, the story shifts gears, and Daphne takes control of the wheel.
It’s at this point, things really get interesting-
There are many breadcrumbs left on the trail, and if you follow them you probably won’t be all that surprised when you learn all that glitters, isn’t gold. But, that’s only part of the picture. Those who appear naïve, those appear in control, those who seem like innocent bystanders may not be as naïve, innocent or as in control as they appear.
By the time we get to the last section in the book, that old phrase about ‘what goes around comes around' came to mind, along with a few other books or movies in which the tables are turned in spectacular fashion, and revenge is carried out with carefully constructed scheming.
The book is not too big on shock and awe, instead opting for a stylish noir type atmosphere, which is more understated than many novels that land in this sub-genre, but it gets the job done, just the same, without going off the rails with unnecessary plot twists.
The characters were not overly developed, as we only see them in certain contexts, with was key to the story, nor did they evoke deep feelings or emotions, other than disdain or dislike, but by the time all is said and done, I had an enormous amount of respect for some of them.
What makes the novel work is the careful arrangement and pacing. The twists weren’t really all that surprising, but they are still delectable and immensely entertaining. The story is a bit of a cautionary tale, a warning to beware of what appears on the surface, to never judge a book by its cover, or blindly trust people. But, it was also a story of escape and empowerment- albeit, one with an unconventional approach, as well as a tale of retribution- which was the most satisfying part of this enjoyable parable.
Overall, this is an impressive debut novel, and I look forward to seeing what else these talented sisters will entertain us with in the future.
Amber has a dream – a big one. She wants to be rich beyond her wildest imagination, marry a gorgeous man and live in a stately mansion. (That’s all?!) And she’s willing do whatever it takes to make that dream a reality!
Daphne did marry the man of her dreams, is rich beyond her wildest dreams, and currently living in an incredible mansion.
So whose dreams really did come true? Just who’s the lucky one here?
Amber is busy embedding herself into Daphne’s life under false pretenses, with her eye squarely on the brass ring. To have everything lucky Daphne has...no matter the cost. Unsuspecting and maybe a bit naïve, Daphne believes she’s found a new best friend. Someone she can share a close bond with. Someone to totally trust and confide in.
A fast-paced, domestic psychological thriller that will keep you up late into the night flying through the pages! Told from both Ambers and Daphne’s POV. Even though I guessed the ending fairly early, the ride was still great fun! This was my first read by this author and I will certainly be looking for her next release!! I would recommend!!
As always…a fabulous reading experience with My Traveling Sisters:)
"I struggled to get a deep breath, to come up with something, anything, that would help me to believe there was a way out."
Envy is a green-eyed monster that sits behind the wheel of someone else's vehicle.....in someone else's lane, in someone else's life.
Amber Patterson is trying to jam her irregular foot into the dainty shoes of another while leaving her own tainted footprints behind. A kind of a Cinderella story with no fairy godmother. This girl has brought evil by the bulk and doles it out on a daily basis.
Amber arrives in Bishops Harbor, Connecticut with a well-calculated plan. She weaves her way into the lives of Jackson and Daphne Parrish, wealthy socialites, through an unseemingly cruel means. Daphne recently lost her sister, Julie, to Cystic Fibrosis. She has even established her own foundation called Julie's Smile. Our girl, Amber, just so happens to have had a cherished sister as well who succumbed to CF. Not so sure about that, Amber.
With one foot in the door, Amber squirms through the tiniest openings in order to get into the very private stronghold of the Parrish household. She switches around her background story on demand and taps into the compassionate chambers of Daphne's heart. Oh, what this devious vamp won't do to bring her plans into fruition.
Liv Constantine is the pen name for two creative sisters, Lynne and Valerie. They've put their heads together to brew a very dark storyline here. I ratcheted my review up to 4 stars for that very reason. Although this has been termed as a psychological thriller, I didn't find it as such. There was plenty of bad people behaving badly for sure who needed to be housed in a psych ward. But the "thriller" element was lacking. The majority of the crazy occured in private pockets without the screeching fear of getting caught. Everything was pre-calculated with master plans......not off-the-grid dangerous, heart-pumping, driving-off-the-cliff thrill of a thriller.
But, hear me out. The Last Mrs. Parrish is a satisfying read. I just like my thriller sandwich heavy on the secret sauce and jalapenos. Perhaps the next offering by these two talented sisters will contain a side order of eye-watering salsa.
Amber Patterson has never been satisfied with the life she has. She is poor and seemingly mousy. She has always wanted more for herself - including money and power and she will have it.
Daphne Parrish is beautiful, rich and sophisticated. She is kind, caring and the mother of two young girls who she would do anything for. Daphne is married to handsome, successful Jackson Parrish. Amber is beyond envious - they have the life that she wants and she has as plan. Daphne is friendly, helpful and unassuming. Little does she know.
Will Amber get what she wants? If she does, where does that leave Daphne? Oh the wicked web they weave!
This novel starts as a slow burn suspense novel that takes off around the mid point. It is also a study of these characters who are truly stunning. These characters make you FEEL, they make your stomach feel like it is going to BURST WIDE OPEN. I want to say more about them but I just cannot - I will not. You must READ this. What else can I say - well, the ending? Just BAM! FRAKKING AWESOME!!
So this was a Traveling Sister Read. It included: Brenda, Kaceey, Lindsay, Jan B., Nikki, Marialyce and Berit. I so loved reading this with my sisters - we had a great time together. “The Last Mrs. Parrish” was one of my favorite thrillers of 2018! I absolutely loved it! (Can’t you tell? Ha!).
this was… fine. nothing spectacular or thrilling, but its interesting enough that i wanted to continue reading and find out what happens.
i think if i hadnt read ‘the wife between’ us, i would have enjoyed this more. its a very similar story and concept. which means that if you really enjoy domestic suspense, then this is the book for you. however, some elements felt a little recycled and uninspired for me personally.
but the characters are well-written and i like the way the narrative is laid out!
so not the most unique book ive read, but still entertaining!
The first two words that come to mind that best describe this book: hilarious dreck.
I've always wanted to know what would happen when FS0G was crossed with a soap opera, atrocious, corny dialogue, eye-rolling inducing one liners and sloppy writing.
Its called: The Last Mrs. Parrish.
The sisters Constantine fall into the ever growing pantheon of female writers who are so adept at writing poor, one dimensional, trite female characters that do nothing with that brain of theirs, even though you know they are capable of...something.
Its just that the authors don't know what that is which means sadly, the readers will pay for that lack of knowledge.
** Read on if you like spoilers but trust me it won’t matter either way because the awfulness of this book stands on its own **
Take Amber Patterson, the wannabe who wants to be the next rich, sophisticated Mrs. Parrish.
She ingratiates herself with the Parrishes, mostly with the real estate mogul, Mr. Parrish himself.
(Isn't it a fortunate coincidence that in all these books all these rich men are so devastatingly handsome?
I mean, seriously, in real life, how many Richie Richs are Christian Grey-gorgeous?
Should we all take a minute to scour Google and see who we come up with? I think most of them look like Harvey Weinstein, no?
And some of them are old! Like, dirty grandpa old!
Wouldn't it make for a better story that Amber had to seduce a Harvey Weinstein-look alike instead?)
Anyway, I digress.
Amber teaches herself about art, culture, wine, boats, and real estate.
Wow, you think a smart cookie like her would go to college instead and work her way toward being a Fortune 500 CEO instead of chasing after a dude to take care of her?
But, then there wouldn't be a story about a superficial woman from the wrong side of the streets who sees the only way to a better life is money. Lots of it.
At the same time, she lies, seduces, cajoles and worms her way into the current Mrs. Parrish's life, Daphne, by saying she lost a sister to a horrible disease, just like Daphne's sister.
Unbeknownst to her, Daphne is not as stupid as Amber is led to believe (that's up for debate) and has deep and painful secrets she has guarded close to her chest.
The biggest secret: her marriage is not perfect. NO!
I never would have guessed, considering all the domestic novels I've read always prefaces the blurb with "A perfect marriage...or is it?"
I never would have guessed.
Daphne gives the readers an insider look into her life and tries to rationalize why she would marry a man like that. Why else? He was rich, elegant and sophisticated; she was educated but not worldly so, natch, he swept her off her feet.
No rhyme, no reason as to why she married him but just because...well...he was such a catch.
Here is where the sister authors really excel. They include all the standard tropes of a domestic drama I've read in so many similar books this year:
1. Charismatic, sociopathic wackadoodle (who is just ovary tweaking handsome) because no one would ever want to hook up with a guy who looks like Weinstein
2. Doodle displays strange behavior that causes suspicions to arise but future wife (both Amber and Daphne) choose to ignore because, well, he's rich, hello?
3. Doodle calls Daphne crazy and unfit and locks her in a psychiatric facility to prevent her from leaving him (the old make-everyone-think-you-are-crazy-so-he-has-the-upper-hand ploy)
4. Husband stalks and keeps track of everything wife buys, eats, and does in a day
5. Spouts verbal abuse to wife and daughters
6. Wackadoodle engages in S&M (which can be part of a healthy sexual lifestyle) but wields it as a weapon
7. Commits rape and gun violence (ahh...yes, I was wondering when sexual violence was going to rear its ugly literary plot device head and here we are again...hi, again. I could have sworn we just met a few books ago.)
8. Memorable one liners:
You were a terrible lover.
He deserved it. He treated me like trash.
You are nothing but a white trash slut or something to that effect.
In conclusion, this was terrible.
Not just because the plot was predictable, unoriginal and something I've read so many times before, not because the characters were laughable stereotypes of stereotypes, and not just because the writing was simplistic and derivative.
This was terrible because for a brief, shining moment, I thought, "Maybe this will be a good book. Maybe I'll like this one."
And maybe I'll finally learn. I mean, its nearly the end of the year. The end is nigh!
THE LAST MRS. PARRISH by LIV CONSTANTINE is an entertaining, fun, suspenseful, and a twisty psychological thriller that was quite the tale of manipulation, deceit and revenge. I wasn’t immediately drawn into this story though as I found parts of the first section a little bit slow and repetitive but once I reached the next section I was flipping those pages as fast as I could.
LIV CONSTANTINE delivers an intriguing, clever, and gripping story here with quite the twisted, wicked and vindictive characters. The story is told from the points of view of our two main characters, Amber and Daphne and divided up into three parts. I really enjoyed how this story was divided up and once I reached the second part of this book it totally took a compulsive and unputdownable turn.
I wasn’t too much of a fan of Amber and her character though. I found her character to be quite off-putting and that really affected my overall enjoyment for this novel. Usually a characters behaviour and actions don’t really bother me but there were definitely some scenes that rubbed me the wrong way and made me a little unforgiving. I would say though that Amber’s delusional ways definitely made for good reading.
As for Daphne’s character, I enjoyed her perspective best and I was thoroughly intrigued.
*Traveling Friends Read*
Norma’s Stats: Cover: I wouldn’t say I was drawn into this cover but I do think it a fitting representation to the storyline though. Title: Piqued my interest and was curious to learn how it tied into plot. Writing/Prose: straightforward, readable Plot: Fascinating, great concept, and entertaining Ending: I wasn’t totally satisfied and might have thought up my own alternate ending. LOL Overall: Even though I had some reservations and felt it was lacking in some areas it was still a highly-entertaining, irresistible, and unputdownable read! Would recommend to anyone that enjoys a fast-paced, unputdownable, and an entertaining mystery/thriller novel.
This is an excellent psychological thriller featuring an unlikable character named Amber Patterson.
She has weaved a plan to introduced herself into the lives of Mr. and Mrs. Parrish, a wealthy couple living in Connecticut, and, hopefully, remove the current Mrs. Parrish from the picture so that she can take her place. We take a journey with Amber and watch her execute her plan carefully.
How does it end? You need to read the book to find out.
The novel takes place in Connecticut and NYC and is narrated in alternating points of view. Overall, I enjoyed this book and found it engaging, interesting, and fast-paced.
This was a 5 star read for me for the first half of the book in terms of sheer entertainment. But then the book veers into some disturbing territory that just didn't make the book as fun to read anymore. That's not to say the story failed to hold my interest, just I liked it more when it was more of a love to hate feeling towards a character rather than flat out hatred.
Amber Patterson wants wealth and privilege and she's willing to do anything to get it. She befriends Daphne, a socialite and philanthropist, and sets her sights on her target, Daphne's husband, Jackson. But no matter how carefully you plan, there's always a chance something could go horribly wrong.
I think fairly early on you can decide if Amber is a character that is going to work for you or not. I personally enjoyed it as she plotted and schemed but that might not be everyone's cup of tea. The story does eventually shift gears a bit and when it happens I wasn't all that surprised but I wasn't really expecting so much dark and disturbing content and at times I had an uncomfortable type feeling when reading. I didn't care for some of the actions of a particular character in the last few chapters as I didn't think they were in the character's best interest when it comes down to it. It felt like the author (actually authors since it was co-written by two people) wanted an overly dramatic ending rather than having the character make logical decisions.
Overall, this was a good page turner even if parts of the story weren't completely satisfying. I would definitely read another novel by Liv Constantine.
Liv Constantine is the pen name of sisters Lynne Constantine and Valerie Constantine.
In The Last Mrs. Parrish, Amber Patterson is fed up. She’s tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted. To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne (a socialite and philanthropist) and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale.
تاریخ نخستین خوانش روز هجدهم ماه می سال2022میلادی
عنوان: آخرین خانم پریش؛ نویسندگان: لیو (لین و والری) کانستنتین؛ تهران، نشر جنگل جاودانه، سال2019میلادی، در400ص؛ افست از روی چاپ نیویورک، سال2017میلادی؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده21م
امبر پترسون از هیچکس بودن خسته شده است و ...؛ «امبر پترسون» هدفش بدست آوردن مردی دارای احترام، برای بدل شدن به شخصیتی در بالاترین محافل نخبگان تجاری هست؛ هدف ایشان نامش «جکسون پریش» است، اما «جکسون» با یک زن بلوند و زرق و برقدار ازدواج کرده، و به ترک همسرش هرگزی نمیاندیشد؛ «جکسون» و «دافنه» یک خانه ی باشکوه، و دو دختر بیهمانند دارند و عاشق همدیگر هستند؛ «امبر» با «دافنه» دوست میشود، و به آهستگی به «جکسون» نزدیکتر میشود و ...؛
تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 29/02/1401هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Library Overdrive Audiobook....read by Suzanne Elise Freeman, and Meg Wolf
This is another one of those psychological novels - that I was ‘sorta’ aware of for about a year. I even bought a Kindle-download for $1.99 one day on a daily deal.
But honest to God - all I remembered about the book was seeing mixed ratings .... From 1 star to 5 stars. I couldn’t have told you anything about what this book was going to be about though. I simply pushed my finger on my iPhone app to download this library audiobook…and started listening. I would have been happy to send it right back if I didn’t like it.
But for me.... this *COMIC-THRILLER* was a kick-of-trashy-sleazy-FUN!
Paul got sucked in too ....He listened to A LOT of this audiobook ( sure he missed some parts - but I filled him in). We listened while in the yard: me soaking in the pool - he dabbling with his scissor-cutters in the garden near by. Listening to an Audiobook like this with a buddy is SERIOUSLY DOUBLE THE PLEASURE. Paul and I both laughed and laughed - making jokes - taking stabs at the most dislikable characters on the planet. ( well maybe not the entire planet - but definitely not likable on ‘any’ planet). We were not only cracking up at the ‘con-ARTISTIC-conniving’ characters .....but some of the most atrocious dialogue - words chosen - vile sentences - had Paul and I laughing our tushes off. Can you imagine being called a “FRUMPY MOUSE?” How about....”YOU’RE GETTING FAT, YOU LAZY BITCH”.... Or.... “YOU’RE NOTHING BUT A WITHERED UP OLD PRUNE”.
SO....SURE....I CAN UNDERSTAND PEOPLE HATING THIS NOVEL.... HONEST...I can. But....I’m not one of them.....I REALLY HAD A BLAST PLAYING WITH THIS VERY ADDICTIVE AUDIOBOOK....
5 full stars for PURE GUILTY PLEASURE.....from me.... ......perhaps a little lower rating from Paul — but he laughed. He thought it was clever - (movie material). It REALLY IS EXTRA-ENJOYABLE to enjoy a book or AUDIOBOOK ‘with’ a buddy in the same room as we did during dinner prep together last night ....cutting our zucchini- yellow squash -broccoli - garlic and onions in the kitchen to mix with pasta.
Yummy foods and naughty ( not THAT type of naughty- but maybe that too), book listening actually go quite well together. 📘🥦🎧
Quite good for such gernre, but I don't like this type of stories, so three stars. Also a first part of the novel was a bit boring: all those endless dicriptions of the lives of rich and privileged. But the inside of the sociopath's mind made up for it. Amber's (a girl who'll stop at nothing to steal the rich husband) character is very well written. It's the second part when it gets into the thriller - the story takes sudden turn into the abusive relationship and we see the victim's perspective. Which is also very well written. And that's should be a warning, because a description of the abuse and humiliation is very graphic and detailed. But it also has a happy ending and all the phychos got what they deserved.
Purchased this book because I saw that Reese Witherspoon’s book club read it. This is an honest review for this book, with no one telling me what to write. This book was not free to me.
You are reading this review of your own free will. There may be some spoilers in this review/the spoiler button was switched.
Part I: Amber Part II: Daphne Part III: Not Named?
Amber- main character Daphne- main character Jackson- Daphne’s rich husband Bella- Daphne and Jackson’s daughter Tallulah- Daphne and Jackson’s daughter Mrs. Battley- Jackson’s head secretary (resigned) Gregg- Ambers ‘boyfriend’
About the author: Writing style is great Throws in large words, why? Chapters are choppy, they jump forward weeks and it’s a little confusing.
Part I: Amber
Amber is extremely sly and motivated to get in with the high society of New York. She ‘meets’ Daphne quite by accident at the gym when she drops a magazine for Cystic Fibrosis, which Amber knew Daphne’s sister had (she had passed). Amber then began making up this entire story on how she too had a sister who passed from it and how she volunteers on all these committees for it. Since this was Daphne’s soft spot, she and Amber became FAST friends, best friends even!
This had Amber and Daphne hanging out together all of the time. Daphne invited Amber to all of the family get togethers and even to Holiday’s. Daphne said that she feels as though Amber is like the sister she lost and that she felt so close to her. Amber told Daphne that she had been through so much in her life (most being made up); which made Daphne feel terrible for Amber and want to help her with everything. Amber also did not have the same dispensable money as The Parrish’s, so Daphne did a lot to help Amber financially as well. Amber told Daphne that her boss touched her inappropriately, this in fact did not happen. She also said she had gotten fired and black mailed from her job, this also did not happen. Daphne then got her to job at Jackson International.
Amber then worked under Mrs. Battley (Jackson’s head secretary) who was teaching her and having her work on items that she needed help with. Amber then began spiking her morning coffee with depression medication, which made Battley confused and forgetful. Amber used this to her advantage and began moving things around on her desk and messing with her, she moved her keys and put them in the trash can to give Battley evidence that she was not acting normally. Shortly (3 months later) Mrs. Battley resigned by handing in her letter to Jackson.
Amber was then working in this position until Jackson found someone. Amber did additional work on her own time with one of Jackson’s new clients by getting to know the file and knowing everything about the client for Jackson. This impressed Jackson and made his luncheon with them easier, since he knew more information on them going into the lunch. Jackson was able to close the deal with this new client and was so impressed with how Amber handled the account he asked Amber to move into Battley’s old office to make them working together easier. (Until the replacement was found),of course.
Amber FINALLY gets Jackson on her side and in her bed, which was her plan alllll along. Amber had began to pin Daphne and Jackson against each other so they begin to question their wonderful marriage and neither of them tell on Amber because they each think she is on their side. Daphne sets up with Gregg, who Amber doesn’t like at all (he’s no Jackson, but he does have money). Amber keeps him around though to make Jackson jealous and to hopefully move things along faster. Gregg doesn’t know anything about this, but he also wants to move forward with Amber. Amber keeps giving Gregg excuses as to why they aren’t able to sleep together, but the real reason is because shes with Jackson and doesn’t want to be with Gregg at all. As long as Daphne knew Gregg was still around, she wouldn’t question Amber about Jackson acting different. Amber also met Gregg and is keeping him around to appease Daphne and to ensure Daphne doesn’t begin to ask questions.
Jackson is beginning to have trouble juggling Daphne and Amber. Daphne seems to be starting to catch on to Jackson having an affair and Amber has to keep talking her down. Jackson doesn’t want to see Amber with other men, but he’s still with Daphne, or is he?
Amber trapped Jackson by lying to him on several occasions to get him to leave Daphne. It looks like everything is falling right into Ambers deceitful lap.
Part II: Daphne
This part is the story starting from the very beginning of when Jackson and Daphne meet. They worked together, which isn’t really too shocking after seeing how he got with Amber.
Jackson Daphne’s entire family fooled into thinking he was a great and wonderful man. Well, he threw his money around people who had very little and impressed the best of them. Jackson is nothing like the person he originally portrayed himself to be. He’s mean, revengeful, cunning, vindictive, conniving, and not someone I would enjoy being married to. He’s scary and abusive, but I think with this being said it was a little predictable. Jackson goes after women who need him, who love him so much they would do anything for him. Well, Daphne saw right through this from the beginning, but not soon enough. I am curious to see how it is going to end with Amber and Daphne, who will get Jackson in the end?
Daphne played stupid for some time and Amber nor Jackson even knew! Shocking! Daphne had this entire plan cooked up, but it looks like Jackson will always outsmart or scare her into doing whatever it is he wants her to do.
Jackson confronted Daphne with Amber to get exactly what Amber wanted. (More details will come of this when you read the book). Amber gets everything in the end, but Daphne doesn’t get nothing at all. Jackson makes sure that Daphne is also taken care of.
Starts with Amber leaving Jackson because he was jerking her around. There really isn’t too much to tell about Part III because if I tell you too much, I will give away the entire story!
I really enjoyed this book, though. Some of it was extremely predictable and other parts of it shocked the hell out of me! This is definitely a book I would recommend to people, however it is also a book that people need to pay attention to.
I hope everyone enjoys the book they are currently reading and feel free to drop a comment in regards to the book and/or my review on it!
Thanks for reading 💜💛
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
The characters in this book are vile, horrid and ghastly, a pleasant reading experience it was not, I was wondering what all the fuss was about for this book, having zero empathy for the main character Amber who plays the perfect villain. It’s not til the second part of the book that I was hooked and started to get it. I did spend a sleepless night tearing through it and the ending was throughly satisfying. I left with a better taste in my mouth than I did going in.
Addictive!! This was very, very good!! I was curious because of all the great recommendations this book had, Reese Witherspoon, Lee Child and Karin Slaughter, just to name a few. The hype is real and it’s a debut novel??! A must read.
It's no secret Amber is a conniving, cold, and calculating gold digger out to snare Daphne's super wealthy husband. The first half of the book is devoted to how she goes about accomplishing her goal. I admit my eyes rolled a few times and I grew a little weary of hearing about the Parrish's wealth and conspicuous consumption lifestyle.
And then suddenly things got very interesting. I won't go into the plot, because it's better to go in knowing nothing. But it was at this point that I couldn't put the book down until I had finished. There are characters you will love to hate and others you will be rooting for. Secrets and true natures will be revealed. And the ending was perfection that will put a satisfied smile on your face.
This isn't a literary masterpiece but for the sheer fun of such an addictive read, it gets 4 stars. So, take off your critical hat, sit back and enjoy the journey. If you’ve been reading some heavy, dense books, I highly recommend this one as a fun palate-cleanser. It’s been compared to a Lifetime movie, and I would agree with that – in a good way. I’m ok with some books just being fun page-turners.
This was a Traveling Sister read with Brenda, Kaceey, Lindsay, Susanne, Nikki, Marialyce and Berit. Reviews of this book and others can be found on their blog at: https://twogirlslostinacouleereading....
A clever psychological thriller with a gripping plot that will keep you turning the pages. But will I remember it is a years time from now ...... Probably not!, but I sure enjoyed the read and couldn't put it down.
This is my type of ESCAPE TO book when I want something that isn't too taxing, but a book that will kept me engaged and guessing. The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine tells the story of a coolly manipulative young woman who befriends a wealthy and successful couple, The women appear appear to have nothing in common and yet they become entwined in each others lives after finding a common bond that ties them together.
The story is told from both Amber’s and Daphne’s points of view and has many twists and turns which I figured early on in the novel but it didn't take a way from my overall enjoyment of the book
An entertaining and page turning read for those who enjoy mystery/thrillers.
I flew through this one and I enjoyed it but I feel like you could of guessed where it was ended. 📖 Overall this year hasn’t been an amazing year for mystery/Thrillers so I need some recs! Please let me know your favorites because I need to read a thriller this year that will wow me! 📖 Overall this was a fun, interesting thriller but I wanted a little more from it.
Amber Patterson is envious of Daphne Parrish who is a rich socialite living in Fairfield County, Connecticut. The two women have never met but Amber develops an obsession with her wonderful lifestyle. Daphne has a rich and handsome husband, two beautiful daughters, full time staff, interesting acquaintances and is president of her own foundation. Amber has few of these attributes and is jealous that someone else gets to live such a great lifestyle. She is fed up with her current environment and decides to make drastic changes. She extensively researches the Parrish family so that she can find a way to befriend them and enter their lives.
Amber moves from Missouri to Connecticut and creates a new identity. She helps Daphne with her foundation’s fundraiser and the two ladies become friends. She becomes a fixture at their dinners and they spend their weekends and holidays together. Amber’s plan seems to be working and she starts her scheme to become the new Mrs. Parrish.
The story is told from both Amber’s and Daphne’s points of view. The book has many twists and turns as each secret is revealed. It's a fun read that is difficult to put down. This novel was written by a team of sisters (Lynne and Valerie) under the name Liv Constantine.
In the midst of reading several books with heavy, less than happy themes, I had a craving for something light and exciting. The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine fit the bill perfectly. It’s a standard psychological thriller with the expected switch of perception and surprises along the way. Not far into the book I guessed the main twist (unusual for me!) but strangely this didn’t affect my enjoyment. Amber feels she deserves so much more. She sets out in a calculating, ruthless way to befriend the perfect Daphne, in a bid to steal her powerful and wildly rich husband. In fact the goal is to replace Daphne and steal her entire privileged life! The novel has some wonderfully nasty characters and the narrative zips along. Character development was adequate enough for me to care about the fates of the main protagonists, even if disbelief had to be suspended on many occasions. The writing and clever plot had echoes of Liane Moriarty but didn’t quite have the knowing, razor like wit. I’ve scored The Last Mrs Parrish 4 stars based the enjoyment factor and it being the right book at the right time.
The only reason this isn’t a 1 Star book is because the last half of the book was moderately bearable. EDIT: after talking about how much i disliked this book in my wrap up decided to move it to a 1 star. NOT WORTH THE 2 STARS.
The main character, Amber, is a villain, and I definitely get her needing to be awful so the reader could hate her, but MAN was she grating. It was so annoying to read and I had to stop and roll my eyes every 10 pages or so.
This book also felt really unoriginal. All the *twists* and major plot points I could see coming from a mile away, not to mention they felt ripped out of actually great thriller books.