Title: PRETTY THINGS
Author: JANELLE BROWN
Genre: FICTION, MYSTERIES AND THRILLERS, WOMEN’S FICTION
Length: 496 PAGES
Publisher: RANDOM HOUSE PUBLISHING
Received From: NETGALLEY
Release Date: APRIL 21, 2020
Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Nina once bought into the idea that her fancy liberal arts degree would lead to a fulfilling career. When that dream crashed, she turned to stealing from rich kids in L.A. alongside her wily Irish boyfriend, Lachlan. Nina learned from the best: Her mother was the original con artist, hustling to give her daughter a decent childhood despite their wayward life. But when her mom gets sick, Nina puts everything on the line to help her, even if it means running her most audacious, dangerous scam yet.
Vanessa is a privileged young heiress who wanted to make her mark in the world. Instead she becomes an Instagram influencer—traveling the globe, receiving free clothes and products, and posing for pictures in exotic locales. But behind the covetable façade is a life marked by tragedy. After a broken engagement, Vanessa retreats to her family’s sprawling mountain estate, Stonehaven: a mansion of dark secrets not just from Vanessa’s past, but from that of a lost and troubled girl named Nina.
Nina’s, Vanessa’s, and Lachlan’s paths collide here, on the cold shores of Lake Tahoe, where their intertwined lives give way to a winter of aspiration and desire, duplicity and revenge.
This dazzling, twisty, mesmerizing novel showcases acclaimed author Janelle Brown at her best, as two brilliant, damaged women try to survive the greatest game of deceit and destruction they will ever play.
“When a body goes down in Lake Tahoe, they say, it does not rise again. The frigid temperature of the lake, it’s vast depths, conspire to keep bacteria at bay. What once was human fails to decompose. Instead, the body is doomed to drift along the lake bed, in perpetual limbo; just more organic matter joining the mysterious menagerie that lives in Tahoe’s uncharted depths.”
What an incredible way to begin this suspenseful novel.
Readers of PRETTY THINGS are in for a treat. This book has more twists and turns than a rollercoaster.
Oh the naivety of youth. As author JANELLE BROWN details the life of high schoolers Nina and Benny, it is easy to picture the two misfits finding each other and only after having built a foundation of friendship do they take the leap of faith into a relationship. I am positive that everyone can remember their first real relationship. It is easy to visualize the intensity of their feelings. Nina and Benny never forget each other and their puppy-love has ramifications that span decades.
Vanessa is Benny’s sister. She is the golden child to Benny’s black sheep. As a twenty-something, she becomes what all Millenials seem to aspire to, that is an Instagram Influencer. She flits through the world wearing designer clothing and is constantly posting photographs of herself on her Instagram feed.
There are so many people who post every moment of their lives online, hoping to be followed by hundreds of thousands of people. What Vanessa, as well as other Instagramers don’t seem to think about, is just who is following their feed and why.
In addition to the role the internet plays in the plot of Pretty Things, also included are characters who have grown up in extreme wealth, never having to actually work for their money. Of course there are also their polar opposites, people who have lived hand-to-mouth and the things they are willing to do to make their lives easier. Dysfunctional family dynamics, mental illness, anger, fear and greed also have their places in this twisted tale.
In PRETTY THINGS someone or maybe several someones are following people’s Instagram posts for nefarious purposes and the dangers of the internet loom large. This tale is a warning to all those who post online to be wary of what they put out on the world wide web.
The author writes with such precision and suspense that it is little wonder the film rights of this book have already been scooped up. Mega-Star Nicole Kidman has already been cast in one of the lead rolls.
With themes that everyone living in this age of Social Media can relate to, PRETTY THINGS is going to be the Number One book on Bestseller Lists for many, many weeks to come.
This book fully deserves every single one of 5 out of 5 Stars. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
*** Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Janelle Brown is the New York Times bestselling author of WATCH ME DISAPPEAR, ALL WE EVER WANTED WAS EVERYTHING, THIS IS WHERE WE LIVE and the upcoming novel PRETTY THINGS.
An essayist and journalist, her writing appears regularly in Vogue, The New York Times, Elle, Wired, Self, The Los Angeles Times, and numerous other publications.
Previously, she spent five years as a senior writer at Salon, covering a diverse range of subjects — from Internet culture to the war on drugs, pop culture to style, public policy issues and the digital music movement– and began her career as a staff writer at Wired, working on seminal Web sites like HotWired and Wired News during the heydey of the dotcom boom.
In the 1990’s, she was also the editor and co-founder of Maxi, an irreverent (and now, long-gone) women’s pop culture magazine.
She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, filmmaker Greg Harrison, and two children.
To learn more about this author, visit the following links: