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Review: The Ex by Alafair Burke

Title: The Ex
Author: Alafair Burke
Year Published: 2017

Genre: Adult fiction
Pages: 304
Rating: 4 out of 5

Location (my 2020 Google Reading map)USA (NY)

FTC Disclosure: I bought this book with my own money

Summary (from the inside flap of the book): Twenty years ago she ruined his life. Now she has the chance to save it.

Widower Jack Harris has resisted the dating scene ever since the shooting of his wife Molly by a fifteen-year-old boy three years ago. An early morning run along the Hudson River changes that when he spots a woman in last night’s party dress, barefoot, enjoying a champagne picnic alone, reading his favorite novel. Everything about her reminds him of what he used to have with Molly. Eager to help Jack find love again, his best friend posts a message on a popular website after he mentions the encounter. Days later, that same beautiful stranger responds and invites Jack to meet her in person at the waterfront. That’s when Jack’s world falls apart.

 Olivia Randall is one of New York City’s best criminal defense lawyers. When she hears that her former fiancé, Jack Harris, has been arrested for a triple homicide—and that one of the victims was connected to his wife’s murder—there is no doubt in her mind as to his innocence. The only question is who would go to such great lengths to frame him—and why?

 For Olivia, representing Jack is a way to make up for past regrets, to absolve herself of guilt from a tragic decision, a secret she has held for twenty years. But as the evidence against him mounts, she is forced to confront her doubts. The man she knew could not have done this. But what if she never really knew him?

Review: I confess that I picked this book off my bookshelf because it is fairly thin and I wanted a book that I could read quickly before tackling some heavier stuff. Turns out it was a good reading choice at it sat well with me as I read it.

There's a twist in this story and I didn't see it coming, which is always a good thing. I thought the twist was one thing, but it wasn't as there was another twist waiting for me in the final few pages. That's cool.

This is a bit of a courtroom drama, a bit of a personal drama, and a bit of a murder mystery, which is a good combination of bits. While I felt it moved a bit slowly (maybe I just mean no drama), I think it's well done. We don't really care about the murder victims because we don't know them, but we do come to care about the suspect and his lawyer as they work their way through evidence. There's more I want to say, but each thing I think of reveals something about the plot that is better to discover as you read the book. :-)

Challenges for which this counts: 

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