The Last Mrs. Parrish

“The Last Mrs. Parrish” was published on Oct. 17.

“The Last Mrs. Parrish” by Liv Constantine is a mesmerizing and compelling psychological thriller that is centered on a story about lust, envy, deceit and greed.

Readers will journey along with three fictional characters — Jackson Parrish, his wife Daphne Parrish, and a self-avowed home-wrecker named Amber Patterson. The story is exquisitely entertaining and addictive — it is a 400-page book filled with so much suspense and mystery.

Readers will be kept wondering about the story’s posed question: “How far would a woman seeking power, prestige and fortune go to secure a man who would provide all those things and more?”

The most exquisite part of the book is that it is written by two sisters, Lynne and Valerie Constantine — Liv Constantine is the duo’s pen name. Since they are separated by three states, the sisters spend countless hours plotting stories through FaceTime sessions or sending each other incessant emails.

The book is broken into three parts and it shares the dual perspectives of both Amber and Daphne, thus leading to great build-up and action. In the first half of the book, readers are introduced to the self-absorbed Amber—a young 20-something with a sleazy past, who ran far away from her hometown in Nebraska to the elite community of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut. All Amber is searching for is money, security and power. In her search to find a wealthy and attractive man to satisfy her goals, she selects the highly successful Jackson and Daphne Parrish as her target.

Meanwhile, Daphne runs a foundation for families who are suffering from cystic fibrosis, as a result from her sister passing away from the ailment years ago. Amber sees this an opportunity to befriend Daphne by lying about having a sister who died from it as well. Daphne takes an immediate liking toward Amber, and the two become close.

Amber slowly gets closer to her goal, but there are secrets she is unaware of that will complicate her plans.

“The Last Mrs. Parrish” feels like a Lifetime movie with its overabundance of drama. And like some Lifetime movies, the book does contain issues of domestic violence and abuse. If you are a reader who is sensitive to these subject matters, then this may not be the book for you.

Although categorized as a psychological thriller, it is more of a dark women’s fiction and romance story. The storyline bears great similarity to “Gone Girl” and even “The Grownup” by Gillian Flynn. Just like in “Gone Girl,” readers read two different perspectives from two different characters to later learn that the one shares a story that is completely unexpected. And in all three stories, each tale focuses on a manipulative female character, who will go to the extreme to get what she desires the most.

This is an excellent and wicked book that definitely deserves a five-star rating. The writing style is eloquent and has a nice flow that made it easy to read and comprehend, and it has great character development.

In its own way, the story is unique and addictive and will keep readers glued to each page until they finish it to the very end. This is a superb and salacious tale of betrayal that contains more than one villain and has so many delicious twists.

Kayla Morales is a student at Shippensburg University and writing as part of the Reviewing the Arts for Publication class.

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