The Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton

How far will she go to get what she wants?

This is the question you’ll be asking yourself as you read The Perfect Girlfriend. A sublime psychological thriller, this is one of those novels you just won’t want to put down.

I read The Perfect Girlfriend in less than twenty-four hours. This was the first time I’ve not wanted to put a book down in a long while, and my first five-star book of 2018. It consumed my time and my brain space to the point I was reading it at my desk at work and on the train. I was completely captivated.

Juliette loves Nate – this much she knows is true. And she’s determined to do anything it takes to win him back, and be not just the perfect girlfriend, but the perfect wife. I honestly can’t tell you what happens in the book, because anything I do say would just be a giant spoiler.

What makes this such a great read is that, the more you get into Juliette’s headspace, the more everything becomes a grey area. This novel is full of morally grey areas; nothing is black and white. You see snatches of Juliette’s past, glimpses of moments that irrevocably changed her life and lead her down the path she’s gone on. And you never quite know who exactly is her intended victim. There were even moments where I found myself rooting for Juliette. That is until you think: ‘Hold on a second, she’s doing what now?’. Because at the end of the day, Juliette is a sociopath. And I was forgetting this.

As soon as you think you have something figured out, you’re having to guess again. And that is the hallmark of what makes a great story – at least in my book.

Hamilton draws from her own experience in the airline industry (she worked for a major airline as cabin crew before settling down with her family) to give insight into the not-so-glamorous life of a flight attendant. From the beginning, we’re introduced to the rigorous training, the late hours and the way it can be all consuming.

Juliette’s voice won’t be for everyone. She’s short, brash, and the sentences are staccato at times. While I think this helps to shape and define the narrative, as I’ve found in other stories (Jane Harper’s The Dry comes to mind), I know this doesn’t work for all.

Either way, I know this is going to be a book I recommend to everyone I meet. It’s thrilling, unputdownable and at times almost claustrophobic, especially towards the end. And, speaking of endings, I can only think of two words:

Holy. Fuck.

THE BOOK: Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton

THE PUBLISHER: Hachette Australia

THE DATE: 27 February 2018

THE WHERE: Dymocks | Booktopia | Publisher

THE SYNOPSIS: 

Juliette loves Nate.

She will follow him anywhere. She’s even become a flight attendant for his airline, so she can keep a closer eye on them.

They are meant to be.

The fact that Nate broke up with her six months ago means nothing. Because Juliette has a plan to win him back.

She is the perfect girlfriend.

And she’ll make sure no one stops her from getting exactly what she wants.

True love hurts, but Juliette knows it’s worth all the pain.

A review copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

 

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