Verityby Published 07 Dec 2018
|Publisher||Hoover Ink, Inc.|
Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer on the brink of financial ruin when she accepts the job offer of a lifetime. Jeremy Crawford, husband of bestselling author Verity Crawford, has hired Lowen to complete the remaining books in a successful series his injured wife is unable to finish.
Lowen arrives at the Crawford home, ready to sort through years of Verity's notes and outlines, hoping to find enough material to get her started. What Lowen doesn't expect to uncover in the chaotic office is an unfinished autobiography Verity never intended for anyone to read. Page after page of bone-chilling admissions, including Verity's recollection of what really happened the day her daughter died.
Lowen decides to keep the manuscript hidden from Jeremy, knowing its contents would devastate the already grieving father. But as Lowen's feelings for Jeremy begin to intensify, she recognizes all the ways she could benefit if he were to read his wife's words. After all, no matter how devoted Jeremy is to his injured wife, a truth this horrifying would make it impossible for him to continue to love her.
A standalone romantic thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Colleen Hoover.
"Find what you love and let it kill you."
Woah, this was fuuuucked up. It should really come with a warning: do not start reading this at night if you want to sleep.
For two reasons, actually. One, it is so compulsively readable that it's almost impossible to put it down until you've finished it. And two, it is seriously creepy and disturbing. Warnings for depictions of child abuse and some graphic violence.
Perhaps this doesn't need to be said, but Verity is definitely not a regular Colleen Hoover romance. There's a love story, and sex, but it is predominantly a creepy thriller. And a mindfuck, if we're being honest.
Verity is mainly about three people - struggling author Lowen Ashleigh, a man called Jeremy Crawford, and Jeremy's wife, Verity, who was recently left incapacitated by a car accident. Verity is a successful writer, but she is no longer able to continue her bestselling series. That's why Lowen is brought in to complete the remaining three books. To do so, she stays at the couple's house so she can go through Verity's notes.
But Lowen finds something else in Verity's office. An unfinished autobiography. As she reads, her fear grows. Lowen begins to dig into dark truths about the family and the deaths of their twin daughters. At the same time, she finds herself falling for Jeremy and wondering if perhaps she should reveal the truth to him.
I don't want to say too much, but I thought it was excellent. Hoover expertly leads us on a winding trail of lies and manipulation. As the story is essentially Hoover - an author - writing about an author reading about another author, there's this constant sense that someone is lying to you-- but who is it? Now, that's not so easy to tell.
I was good at spewing bullshit. It’s why I became a writer.
This may seem like a bit of a backhanded compliment, but I think I enjoy Hoover’s fucked-up books so much because I usually find her regular romances kinda fucked up. I like her books so much more when she's writing about trauma and morally-questionable characters than when she's trying to sell me a douche as a love interest.
It's a clever book, and I don't simply mean because of its twists and turns. It's clever because of the fear and uncertainty the author creates. That all three authors create. The aptly-named Verity is a novel about fictions and truths, about authors and characters, and about how it can sometimes be hard to separate the two.
I found it absolutely riveting.
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I've pulled up this review and tried to make the words come for a couple of days now, but every time I try to write the words all that comes to mind is WTF Colleen?! Obviously we were warned going in that this one would but much different than her other novels, but she didn't tell us that it would be so compulsive and I wouldn't be able to live my life while reading it. How dare she?? But seriously, this book was so delicious in a seriously twisted way, and I feel slightly guilty admitting that I loved Verity so much due to its dark and disturbing nature.
"Find what you love and let it kill you." -Charles Bukowski
There's not really much you can say about the plot here, other than read it for yourself ya filthy animal you really should just go into it blind. Obviously there are numerous content warnings,[spoilers removed] , but it you're open to picking up this book with as little knowledge of the story as possible it will be in your best interest.
"Most people come to New York to be discovered. The rest of us come here to hide."
The characters here are deviously flawed, every last one of them, and I love this. I'm a sucker for storylines that feature the writing of a book inside the plot, and this was no exception. The varying between Low's present tense POV and the chapters featuring Verity's autobiography built the most exquisite tension, and by the end of the novel we are flipping pages as quickly as Low is, trying to decipher where this is going and what's going to happen. Also, that epilogue. That is all I will say, other than I'm respectful and grateful to CoHo for leaving this book without the neat wrapping and shiny bow. There are pieces of the story that are essentially left up to the reader to determine their thoughts on, and while a bloody and gruesome story, this will make a fabulous book club novel with copious discussion points. Highly recommended if you can stomach the content, but beware reader-once you pick it up, you certainly won't want to set it down until you turn the final page.
I LOVED THIS BOOK. Just posted my full booktalk on youtube (polandbananasbooks). I BLEW THROUGH IT IN TWO DAYS COULDN'T PUT IT DOWN. It's way up at the top of my coho favorites =)
This book was disturbing in a way that is hard to put in words. Verity is pitched as a thriller and a romantic suspense book. Well, allow me to be as candid as I can: "Verity is a mind-fuck". Is Disturbing. Twisted. Creepy. It will have you questioning things. Brutal. Haunting.
There is no question, the story is hypnotizing. ENGROSSING even if alarmingly disconcerting. And the cherry on top? The ending. That probably held the most savage plot twist I have encountered in a romantic book.
If this is the niche that CoHo find and stick, baby I'm yours for life!
Verity is not an easy read. I am not really even sure if I can say it was an enjoyable read. But it was brilliant. Amazingly well written and unputdownable, Colleen will leave you questioning everything.
By the end of the book, I hate all characters....
Thank you so much Kim for your indirect recommendation!