Cross Her Heart (Sarah Pinborough)

Rating: 4 Stars

Lisa is a single mother to daughter Ava with a past she’s been running from. Not even her best friend, Marilyn knows the extend of her life before they started working together over ten years ago. As Ava becomes a teenager and begins to rebel against her mother (especially after the truth about her absent father comes to light) Lisa feels suffocated by the memories of her past, and the friend she left behind.

Without giving away too much of Pinborough’s latest novel – this one was good. Different from Behind Her Eyes (which I enjoyed a little more than this one, though both were quite interesting) this one stays a little closer to the ground (and further from fantasy). I enjoyed both layers of Lisa’s past and the way everything was played out, moving in and out between her childhood, early adulthood, and the present. Some of it was a bit predictable (what went down in the basement of the house), some of it was a bit weird (the dynamic of Ava’s friends), and some of it was just unnecessary (Marilyn’s side story?) but all in all, this was a good read, which was what I was expecting from Pinborough. I was happy she didn’t disappoint!

Just as with Behind Her Eyes you have the layers of a friendship from the past and from the present, each vying for dominance in the story, but doing a beautiful job of balancing themselves out. It seemed a little strange to me to make Lisa so young and dysfunctional, but when held up against her home life, it almost makes sense that she’d be such a rough child.

The only thing I had a real issue with in this novel was the very ending. Which (spoiler) was unrealistic – not everything gets tied in a bow and ends happily ever after, and this just seemed a bit forced, in my opinion.

Nevertheless, I’d recommend this read to anyone who enjoyed Behind Her Eyes and that slightly demented mind game played between narrator and reader. Lovely.

Boo was a little apprehensive at first …

Disclaimer: All thoughts and opinions are simply my own honest ones and I have not been asked to write this review. Not everyone may agree with my thoughts and that’s okay! I hope you enjoy reading about mine.

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