Summary and book reviews of The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine

The Last Mrs. Parrish

by Liv Constantine

The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine X
The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine
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  • First Published:
    Oct 2017, 400 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 3, 2018, 400 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Davida Chazan

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About this Book

Book Summary

The mesmerizing debut about a coolly manipulative woman and a wealthy "golden couple," from a stunning new voice in psychological suspense.

Some women get everything. Some women get everything they deserve.

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.

ONE

Amber Patterson was tired of being invisible. She'd been coming to this gym every day for three months—three long months of watching these women of leisure working at the only thing they cared about. They were so self-absorbed; she would have bet her last dollar that not one of them would recognize her on the street even though she was five feet away from them every single day. She was a fixture to them—unimportant, not worthy of being noticed. But she didn't care—not about any of them. There was one reason and one reason alone that she dragged herself here every day, to this machine, at the precise stroke of eight.

She was sick to death of the routine—day after day, working her ass off, waiting for the moment to make her move. From the corner of her eye, she saw the signature gold Nikes step onto the machine next to her. Amber straightened her shoulders and pretended to be immersed in the magazine strategically placed on the rack of her own machine. ...

Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
Courtesy of litlovers.com

1. Start perhaps by talking about the disparity in life-styles — wealthy vs. "just-getting-by — that sets Amber off on her con job. How great are the differences in the women's lives? Amber is jealous, belieing that Daphne takes the ease and luxuries of her life for granted. Is she correct, at least in the first half of the book? Have you ever envied someone for their wealth? Of if you're wealthy, have you ever been on the receiving end of others' envy?

2. Talk about Amber's inner monologues, the ones she has, for instance, while talking to Daphne about the death of Julie. What more do the internal conversations reveal about Amber?

3. Is Daphne naive, or is Amber that convincing in her lies?

...
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Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Combine this structure [introducing the antagonist first] with a very straightforward, slightly edgy feel to Amber's voice and a more lyrical sound to Daphne's – perhaps the two sisters divvied up these characters between them – and you have everything you need in both literary style and character development. Add to all of that Amber's devious plot to steal away Daphne's husband (with some twists that I cannot mention, since that would be giving away major plot spoilers), and, here too, the authors grab the reader with just the right amount of suspense to turn this into a real psychological thriller, but it is also not overly heavy or dark, making it all the more readable.   (Reviewed by Davida Chazan).

Full Review Members Only (553 words).

Media Reviews

People Magazine

[A] wicked debut thriller…What happens will surprise you—and you’ll relish every diabolical turn.

Booklist

The twists keep coming in this psychological roller coaster from debut author Constantine, the pen name of sisters Lynne and Valerie Constantine. … this is a satisfying thriller that offers a window into the darker side of glamorous lives and powerful men.

Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Suffice it to say that readers would have to go back to the likes of Ira Levin's A Kiss Before Dying or Patricia Highsmith's The Talented Mr. Ripley to find as entertaining a depiction of a sociopathic monster.

Library Journal

Starred Review. Deliciously duplicitous. ... equally as twisty, spellbinding, and addictive as Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl or Paula Hawkins's The Girl on the Train.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review. Constantine's debut novel is the work of two sisters in collaboration, and these ladies definitely know the formula. A Gone Girl-esque confection with villainy and melodrama galore.

Author Blurb Jane Green, New York Times bestselling author of The Sunshine Sisters
A wonderfully clever story, filled with suspense and a shocking twist, that kept me turning the pages.

Author Blurb Sara Blaedel, Denmark's award-winning internationally bestselling "Queen of Crime"
The Last Mrs. Parrish is an extraordinary debut and gripping psychological thriller that is full of unexpected twists. Readers will become obsessed with these chilling characters who pull you in and refuse to let go.

Author Blurb Karen Dionne, author of The Marsh King's Daughter
Liv Constantine's The Last Mrs. Parrish is a beautifully constructed set piece, an intricate narrative that doubles back and folds in on itself like a Mobius strip, revealing secret upon secret, and layer upon layer, with a seductive 'just one more chapter' urgency that will keep readers up all night. Addictive!

Author Blurb Jenny Milchman, USA Today bestselling author of Cover of Snow, Ruin Falls, and As Night Falls
Gillian Flynn meets Joy Fielding in Liv Constantine's The Last Mrs. Parrish. In an age of great anti-heroines, comes the most unlikeable one yet, the coldly devilish Amber Patterson. This thriller delivers the most satisfying ending since B.A. Paris' smash hit Behind Closed Doors - and a victorious romp of revenge.

Reader Reviews

Acoygirl

The Last Mrs Parrish
Love this book. It grabs you from the start and never lets go.

Michael Haughton

The Last Mrs. Parrish
The writer had a good imagination cause to start like this was brilliant. Liv started the story plot in a gym. I was impressed by this. With the main character name Amber trying to be coy by going to this gym every day to get a work out. She finally ...   Read More

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Beyond the Book

Familial Co-Authors using One Name

According to their website, "Liv Constantine is the pen name of sisters Lynne Constantine and Valerie Constantine." Hearing this piqued my curiosity regarding, not simply literary collaborations (there are tons of those), but writers who collaborate and then publish their fictional works under a single pseudonym. Here are some famous related co-authors who write under one name:

Lars KeplerThe first on the list is the duo Nicci French. This is the pseudonym of the married British team Nicci Gerrard and Sean French, who have written many very popular psychological thrillers. The historical crime writer Michael Gregorio is actually the husband and wife team of English teacher Michael G. Jacob and philosophy teacher Daniela De Gregorio, who live in ...

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