Review: There Should Have Been Eight by Nalini Singh
Moving out of the romance realm, Ms. Singh brings it with a twisted thriller. At the heart of this story, it is all about malicious envy. This is more than the basic jealous or envy of what someone else has. To me, it also speaks to a mental imbalance of the person coveting someone else's good fortune. I have encountered this type of malicious envy and being on the receiving end is no fun. This is what happens to Bea.
It seems that Bea is the goodhearted friend who draws everyone to her like a flame does to moths. This would normally be a great thing, until one factors in, that Bea's friends are all her older sister Darcie's friends originally. Sometimes siblings can share friends. Sometimes they cannot. This story told from the perspective of Luna is disturbing at times as well as depressing. Why is it depressing? Just as the title of the story states, There should have been eight. Once in a lifetime, there is a star so bright that comes into one's life. When that star is extinguished much too soon, those remaining suffer a hole they cannot seem to fill. This is how it is for the ones Bea left behind. Each of the remaining friends has their story of loss to share about Bea. When they reunite for a week after years of drifting apart, it could have been a great gathering of friends. Instead, it is a horror weekend of betrayal, death, and secrets revealed.
What I found disturbing in this story is Luna. I am no shrink nor do I pretend to be. This character though, is not exactly likeable but definitely someone who is goal focused. She doesn't seem to have the warmth and depth of Ms. Singh's usually characters. She almost comes across as mostly emotionless with the exception of furor and anger. In someways, she reminds me of the Psy in another series written by Ms. Singh. I like Luna. Maybe because I see so many of her characteristics in my mother. I digress.
This weekend of 7 friends with one new girlfriend becomes a terror of unexplained events and a survival against the elements. One would think this book is more haunting and paranormal. It is not. In fact, within the first few chapters I figured out the main plot of the story. I just wasn't sure how it would play out to the end. This book surprised me with some of the brutality and cruelty. Then again, reading Ms. Singh's paranormal romances, I shouldn't be surprised by any cruelty. This story ended in a bittersweet and fitting conclusion. I liked it! This book is recommended to those who enjoy betrayal themes with a touch of suspense.
*provided by NetGalley