I’m sure that practically every parent who learns their child has been molested engages in some fairly imaginative revenge fantasies. For Natalie and Will, whose first date included a discussion about how they could commit the perfect murder together, fantasy has become reality. Are they smart enough to get away with it?
My answer, from the planning through to the execution and beyond, was a resounding “Hell, no!” Between them this couple made so many obvious mistakes I felt it was inevitable they’d be caught. While some of their failures were mentioned there were others that seemed obvious to me but were never brought up.
If the characters had no background in anything vaguely related to crime then I could have easily overlooked some of their missteps and chalked them up to their emotional state after learning of their child’s molestation but they both went to law school and one of them works as a criminal defense attorney! I kept wanting to tell them to binge watch some Criminal Minds, Rizzoli & Isles or any of the CSI or Law and Order franchises. There are so many to choose from and a few episodes of any one of them would have helped prevent some of the face palm moments of this book.
I had expected that a book with such emotionally charged subject matter would be a difficult read but I actually didn’t feel much while reading. I didn’t find anything to like about either of the main characters. If I had connected to them at all I think this would have helped me care if their crime was discovered or not. It turned out that when I started writing my review immediately after finishing the last page I had to double check what their names were. I don’t remember the last time that happened.
Whoever wrote the blurb gave away too much of the story so I wound up spending the first half of the book waiting for something to happen that I didn’t already know. I found most of the sequence of events predictable and one part I didn’t predict simply annoyed me. I definitely liked the premise of this book and had high hopes for it. Unfortunately it didn’t work for me.
Don’t just take my word for it though. There are plenty of ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ reviews so I’d encourage you to check out some of those before deciding if this is the book for you or not.
Content warnings include discussions surrounding addiction, suicide, child pornography, grooming and sexual abuse.
Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin – MIRA for the opportunity to read this book.
Once Upon a Blurb
On their first date back in law school, Natalie and Will Clarke bonded over drinks, dinner and whether they could get away with murder. Now married, they’ll put the latter to the test when an unchecked danger in their community places their son in jeopardy. Working as a criminal defense attorney, Nat refuses to rely on the broken legal system to keep her family safe. She knows that if you want justice … you have to get it yourself.
Shocked to discover Nat’s taken matters into her own hands, Will has no choice but to dirty his, also. His family is in way too deep to back down now. He’s just not sure he recognises the woman he married. Nat’s always been fiercely protective, but never this ruthless or calculating. With the police poking holes in their airtight plan, what will be the first to fall apart: their scandalous secret – or their marriage?