The Birthday Girl Book Review

3 out of 5 stars

Thank You Dutton Books for the free copy of this book in exchange for my review. Publication date: August 6, 2019

Summary: (Borrowed from Goodreads)

At forty, it appears Ellie has everything she ever wanted: a handsome husband; an accomplished, college-age stepdaughter; a beautiful ten-year-old girl; two adorable and rambunctious six-year-old twin boys; lush, well-appointed homes in Los Angeles, Park City, and Palm Springs; a thriving career as a well-known fashion designer of casual women’s wear; and a glamorous circle of friends.

Except everything is not quite as perfect as it looks on the outside—Ellie is keeping many secrets. This isn’t the first of her birthday parties that hasn’t gone as planned. Something happened on the night of her sweet sixteenth. Something she’s tried hard to forget.

But hiding the skeletons of her past comes at a cost, and all of Ellie’s secrets come to light on the night of her fabulous birthday party in the desert—where everyone who matters in her life shows up, invited or not. Old and new, friends and frenemies, stepdaughters and business partners, ex-wives and ex-husbands congregate, and the glittering facade of her life crumbles in one eventful night.

Thoughts: I had read someone’s review of this book before reading it and they weren’t a fan of it, because of this I was a little worried about reading it. I was pleasantly surprised though because I really liked this book.

The way this book was written and the way that the story went reminded me a lot of What Alice Forgot? Something that I really enjoyed in this book was how easy it was to get through and how both the past and present just kind of blended into each other.

This story went back and forth between 24 years ago and the present time and I loved how I understood both time years. It was like going back and forth with my present day and me as a teenager. The time years that were used and the difference between social classes that Ellie and young Ellie were a part of was something that I really enjoyed.

While there were aspects that I liked about this book there were several things that I found annoying. The main thing that I couldn’t get over was how annoying Ellie was, 16 year old Ellie was such a likable character so I was mad that her adult version just was so terrible. She was such a superficial character and she was so materialistic that I found her adult version unrelatable.

Something else that I couldn’t get over was that the description and summary of the book just wasn’t accurate to what actually happened. It didn’t really read as a thriller but just more so a little bit of mystery. While I did like that things were discovered in the present with stories from the past it wa still frustrating for the story and summary not to match.

Then you get to the ending and for me it just didn’t add up. I didn’t like the twist that was included, not because it was predictable but because I didn’t understand the book at that point.

You can purchase this book at Barnes and Noble or look for it at your local library.

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