Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson

Rating: 3 out of 5.

What I Loved:

I really enjoyed the mystery of this story. Roux is this mysterious woman with a secret story that Amy has to understand so that she can beat Roux at her own game.

My Synopsis:

Amy is the mother of an adorable infant boy, the stepmom of a lovely teenage girl, and married to a wonderful husband. Her life feels picture-perfect.

Then, a bookclub meeting is taken over by new-to-the-group Angelica Roux. A dominant woman who starts a game of “Never have I ever” where the women share the worst thing they have done today, this week, this month, this year . . . ever. Amy immediately dislikes Roux and knows that she’s playing dirty for some reason.

Then, Angelica Roux confronts Amy revealing that she knows what Amy did. It turns out Amy has a secret and she’d like to keep it buried. Roux blackmails Amy, but Amy isn’t just giving in. Now, she’s on a dangerous path to find out who Roux is and just what she knows.

How I Felt:

The characters were extremely interesting, but I didn’t really connect with Amy as I would have liked. As the MC, I wanted to care a bit more about her. Angelica Roux was definitely a character I loved to hate. She always seemed to be one step ahead of Amy, and I couldn’t wait to see what it would take for Amy to outsmart her.

The plot lagged a bit for me. I understood why Amy wanted to keep her secret a secret, but I think she could have taken ownership for what she did and it would have resolved a lot of problems. Maybe that’s why I didn’t connect well with her. The secret she is hiding doesn’t make her a great person, and not taking responsibility seems to be her worse.

There were definitely some exciting events throughout the story, and that kept the plot moving along, and made the book a bit of a page-turner. There were some clever things that happened that had me dropping my jaw, and I loved that!

Overall, this was a good thriller with some exciting moments throughout the story. The character connection with me, as the reader, lacked, and caused me to enjoy the book a bit less.

Content Warnings:

Child sexual abuse, driving under the influence, abuse, abduction.

To Read or Not To Read:

I would recommend Never Have I Ever for readers that enjoy a domestic thriller.

Where to Find This Book:

Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson is available at these sites.

Bookshop.org | Amazon Kindle | Amazon | Goodreads

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In this game, even winning can be deadly…

Amy Whey is proud of her ordinary life and the simple pleasures that come with it—teaching diving lessons, baking cookies for new neighbors, helping her best friend, Charlotte, run their local book club. Her greatest joy is her family: her devoted professor husband, her spirited fifteen-year-old stepdaughter, her adorable infant son. And, of course, the steadfast and supportive Charlotte. But Amy’s sweet, uncomplicated life begins to unravel when the mysterious and alluring Angelica Roux arrives on her doorstep one book club night.

Sultry and magnetic, Roux beguiles the group with her feral charm. She keeps the wine flowing and lures them into a game of spilling secrets. Everyone thinks it’s naughty, harmless fun. Only Amy knows better. Something wicked has come her way—a she-devil in a pricey red sports car who seems to know the terrible truth about who she is and what she once did.

When they’re alone, Roux tells her that if she doesn’t give her what she asks for, what she deserves, she’s going to make Amy pay for her sins. One way or another.

To protect herself and her family and save the life she’s built, Amy must beat the devil at her own clever game, matching wits with Roux in an escalating war of hidden pasts and unearthed secrets. Amy knows the consequences if she can’t beat Roux. What terrifies her is everything she could lose if she wins.

A diabolically entertaining tale of betrayal, deception, temptation, and love filled with dark twists leavened by Joshilyn Jackson’s trademark humor, Never Have I Ever explores what happens when the transgressions of our past come back with a vengeance.

Just the Facts:

Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson
Genre: Thriller
Page Count: 352 pages
Publisher: William Morrow
Pub Date: July 30, 2019

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I was provided an advanced reader’s copy of this book for free. I am leaving my review voluntarily.

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