Much dribbling punctuated by a few slam dunks.

Two weeks in the life of a man who caught his wife in flagrante delicto—or did he?

When Wall Street executive Jonathan Sweetwater returns home early—an unlikely occurrence since he's usually jetting around the country at the beck and call of Bruce, a hoops-obsessed CEO who likes to go one-on-one on private NBA-caliber courts—he hears the unmistakable sound of a tryst emanating from a guest bedroom in his Connecticut mansion. A glimpse through the keyhole confirms his worst fears—he sees the backs of two naked people, a long-haired man sitting on the Frette sheets getting dressed and a woman resembling his wife, Claire, walking into the bathroom. Without making his presence known, beyond leaving his briefcase in the living room, Jonathan takes off on another trip. A cat-and-mouse game unfolds: Which spouse is going to admit what to whom and who is going to do it first? Every time Jonathan tries to confront his wife, he is interrupted, in one case by his surprise 40th birthday party. Such a coincidence-dependent plotline threatens to grow wearying, until Greenberg shifts focus to back story—Jonathan embarks on an inquiry about his late father, Percy, a charismatic senator who left his mother when Jonathan was 9 and married five more times. Jonathan has the resources to investigate Percy’s serial monogamy himself while he waits for a private detective’s report on Claire. Greenberg is adept at description and dialogue. The basketball scenes, predictably for this ESPN sportscaster, are compelling—in one, Jonathan challenges Michael Jordan. Jonathan’s conversations with his mother, and the five other wives, in colorful locales—Manhattan, Chicago, Aspen, Nevis and London—are entertaining even if they generate scant insight into Percy’s behavior or its relevance to the burning question at hand—did she or didn’t she? There's a superfluous subplot involving Bruce’s penchant for blackmailing employees. Ultimately, Greenberg paints himself into narrative corners where the only exits are marked with clichés.

Much dribbling punctuated by a few slam dunks.

Pub Date: Jan. 20, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-06-232586-0

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Morrow/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Nov. 5, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2014


Dark and unsettling, this novel’s end arrives abruptly even as readers are still moving at a breakneck speed.

Ten years after her teenage daughter went missing, a mother begins a new relationship only to discover she can't truly move on until she answers lingering questions about the past.

Laurel Mack’s life stopped in many ways the day her 15-year-old daughter, Ellie, left the house to study at the library and never returned. She drifted away from her other two children, Hanna and Jake, and eventually she and her husband, Paul, divorced. Ten years later, Ellie’s remains and her backpack are found, though the police are unable to determine the reasons for her disappearance and death. After Ellie’s funeral, Laurel begins a relationship with Floyd, a man she meets in a cafe. She's disarmed by Floyd’s charm, but when she meets his young daughter, Poppy, Laurel is startled by her resemblance to Ellie. As the novel progresses, Laurel becomes increasingly determined to learn what happened to Ellie, especially after discovering an odd connection between Poppy’s mother and her daughter even as her relationship with Floyd is becoming more serious. Jewell’s (I Found You, 2017, etc.) latest thriller moves at a brisk pace even as she plays with narrative structure: The book is split into three sections, including a first one which alternates chapters between the time of Ellie’s disappearance and the present and a second section that begins as Laurel and Floyd meet. Both of these sections primarily focus on Laurel. In the third section, Jewell alternates narrators and moments in time: The narrator switches to alternating first-person points of view (told by Poppy’s mother and Floyd) interspersed with third-person narration of Ellie’s experiences and Laurel’s discoveries in the present. All of these devices serve to build palpable tension, but the structure also contributes to how deeply disturbing the story becomes. At times, the characters and the emotional core of the events are almost obscured by such quick maneuvering through the weighty plot.

Dark and unsettling, this novel’s end arrives abruptly even as readers are still moving at a breakneck speed.

Pub Date: April 24, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-5464-5

Page Count: 368

Publisher: Atria

Review Posted Online: Feb. 5, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2018


With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 22, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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