Jess needs a fresh start. She’s broke and alone, and she’s just left her job under less than ideal circumstances. Her half-brother Ben didn’t sound thrilled when she asked if she could crash with him for a bit, but he didn’t say no, and surely everything will look better from Paris. Only when she shows up – to find a very nice apartment, could Ben really have afforded this? – he’s not there.
The longer Ben stays missing, the more Jess starts to dig into her brother’s situation, and the more questions she has. Ben’s neighbors are an eclectic bunch, and not particularly friendly. Jess may have come to Paris to escape her past, but it’s starting to look like it’s Ben’s future that’s in question.
The socialite – The nice guy – The alcoholic – The girl on the verge – The concierge
Everyone’s a neighbor. Everyone’s a suspect. And everyone knows something they’re not telling.
Synopsis source: Goodreads
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Well, I’m not entirely sure what to think about this book. It was a relatively quick read, given the short and snappy chapters. There are a lot of POVs which combined with those short and snappy chapters gave me a bit of whiplash at first but as I got used to them, it wasn’t an issue. There was a dark, Hitchcockian feel to the setting that lent to the evilness of the apartment building, and for about the first third of the book, I was excited to see how this unfolded. However, on the whole, this book was a bit underwhelming.
It has almost a locked room concept, except instead of a room, it’s an entire apartment building. All of the neighbors have something they are hiding, feelings they don’t talk about regarding Jess’ brother, Ben, making you wonder what happened to Ben and who made it happen.
As much insight as we received into the minds of these characters, they felt two-dimensional. The recollections we are permitted to see are supposed to lend an air of mystery and evil intent, but while they were enough to keep me reading to find out the truth, the end had a very lackluster climax and reveal. It’s not that the reveal wasn’t surprising, because it was. I didn’t guess any of the reveals, so yes, surprising, but they felt flat.
I haven’t read her more famous book that preceded this one, The Guest List, and I’m on the fence about whether I want to or not. This book felt like the author was ticking items off a list for How to Write a Mystery Novel or something. It was very methodical, breadcrumbs dropped cursorily, obvious and deliberate, just another cog in the wheel moving this story forward, because to be honest, there wasn’t much plot doing the moving.
On the whole, if you’re looking for a good mystery/thriller to read, I would probably pass on this one.
Join the Discussion!
Whether you agree with my assessment or not, I hope you’ll join us on Tuesday, March 29th at 7pm CST on Instagram Stories Live. We will be chatting and getting to know this month’s co-host, working on some projects, sipping some bevies, and talking all about The Paris Apartment. Allow me to introduce my co-host for the evening, Laura of Fiction and Fibers!
Fiction and Fibers
Laura is the crocheter, weaver, and reader behind Fiction & Fibers. She started her blog in early 2021 as a way to share her patterns as well as share her love for all things books and yarn. She can be found posting photos of her crafts and reads on Instagram, and a selection of her patterns and unique fibers can also be found in her Etsy shop.
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Update 3/29/22: Watch the replay of our book club discussion here! Don’t worry, we give you plenty of warning before we venture into spoiler territory!
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