Right off the bat, I need to tell you all that I received this book as part of a Goodreads giveaways, but that does not affect my review of this novel. The review that follows represents my honest opinion.
Grace is hiding out in an antique repair shop in Paris as Julie from California. In truth, Grace comes from small town Garland, Tennessee and she is running from that past as fast as she can. But Grace is haunted by the two loves of her life, Riley and Alls, who went to prison for her, and whom are about to be released from prison. The push and pull between Riley and Alls, her past and her present, cause Grace to panic about her future.
Not all characters are meant to be likable. And I’m still not sure if Grace was likable or just plain fascinating.
What pulls you through Unbecoming is not a lovable character, but the discovery of a compelling one. I brought this book home to St. Louis with me for the holidays and had a hard time putting it down.
First time writer, Rebecca Scherm, reveals the depth of her heroine in layers: the calculating vulnerability of flashbacks and the frantic smarts of a present living a lie.
Scherm slowly and steadily crafts this psychological portrait of a femme fatale for a modern era. Not in the sense of gun-toting, thigh high slit femme, but more the doe eyed beauty that make the men in her life melt and help her at their own risk. Watching Grace twist around in her own denial and develop into this manipulative person is riveting.
The novel itself starts slowly and reveals little details so that you feel you’re piecing things together for yourself. That is not to say that as it progresses Unbecoming is an action packed novel–even the sparse action is methodical. The strength of Scherm’s story is in its drama and the aspects of a psychological thriller.
A must read for any fans of Hitchcock’s To Catch a Thief, Scherm is a thriller writer to watch.
Unbecoming comes out January 22nd in hardback. I give Unbecoming 4 Book Bubbles: A Popping Good Time.
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