Hot on the trail of her much talked-about debut, Lip Service, M.J. Rose once again explores the dark corners of the human psyche in a riveting and erotic tale of love, lust...and betrayal.
Although everyone thinks she's being paranoid, psychotherapist Jordan Sloan knows better. Haunted by the long-ago murder of her father, she learns that his killer has been paroled and she instantly fears his revenge. Only she knows the dark secret of her relationship with Mallory -- and the depth of her deception in providing the testimony that put him away. She sees him in shadows, in mirrors, in photographs her teenage daughter takes in the park....
Still suffering the bruises of her husband's betrayal, Jordan grapples with ambiguous emotions even as she is drawn again to her estranged spouse. Clinging desperately to the hard-earned stability of her life, she maneuvers through the meshwork of love's fragile bonds, layers of longing, and the chaos that is human relationships. All the while, a mysterious new patient seems intent on contributing to Jordan's unraveling. For as she struggles to prove that her fear of Mallory is justified, she also wrestles with how it might feel to finally forgive Robert's infidelity.
M.J. Rose has crafted a rare and evocative new novel of spellbinding energy, as a woman come to terms with her own life -- assuming she will continue to enjoy the luxury of living it.
My daughter stood beyond the fieldstone fence that separated the house from the beach. From the kitchen window, Lilly's slight form was silhouetted against the sunset and the sea. In that wide-open vista she seemed vulnerable and small. Even from a distance, I could see that she was shivering.
Grabbing a jacket for her, I threw one around my own shoulders and walked out, down the sloping lawn that was not yet green because spring had not quite arrived, and out to the edge of the property. It was the last weekend of March and the harsh winds blew against my face. Waves broke wildly against the shore. The sea air smelled briny: seaweed and shells, crabs and mussels.
Climbing down a half-dozen stone steps, I reached Lilly's side and handed her the jacket. "It's cold out here."
When my seventeen-year-old daughter turned to me, her features were distorted by sadness and her eyes, the green-blue of the sea beyond us, were filled with unshed tears.
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Hypnotic, beautifully written, this mesmerizing novel explores the corrosive effect of evil and how painful psychological truths long buried within a family can corrupt the present and, through courage and understanding, lead to healing and renewal.
Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with an absolute sense of smell. He apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille becomes obsessed with creating the "ultimate perfume" - the scent of a beautiful young virgin.
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From NYT bestselling author Ann Leary
The captivating story of an unconventional New England family.
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