Second Life by S J Watson. Read January 2015.

“She loves her husband. She’s obsessed by a stranger.
She’s a devoted mother. She’s prepared to lose everything.
She knows what she’s doing. She’s out of control.
She’s innocent. She’s guilty as sin.
She’s living two lives. She might lose both . . .”
Had I been handed this book in a plain wrapper, without being told the author, I would’ve thought it a decent enough psychological thriller. However, on the heels of Before I Go To Sleep and surrounded by all the hype given to this follow up novel, I have to say I was a little disappointed.
The basic premise – woman signs up to online dating sites to try and follow in the tracks of her sister – has been done before (see for example Forward Slash by Louise Voss & Mark Edwards), and other aspects of the plot were reminiscent of several books I’ve read (including Paul Pilkington’s Emma Holden trilogy).
I struggled with the first half of the book mainly because I’m becoming jaded with female lead characters who make unbelievably stupid choices. Having said that I’m glad I persevered because the second half was a good read. The action moved up a gear and I felt myself drawn in as I’d hoped to be all along.
Thank you to the publisher, via Netgalley, for the advance copy e-book.



6 thoughts on “Second Life by S J Watson. Read January 2015.

  1. What we would we do for our reading material at the moment if there weren’t so many female characters who make terrible choices?! I was a bit underwhelmed by Before I Go To Sleep; I think by the time I read it I’d heard so many great things my expectations were too high – I’d probably have enjoyed it more if I’d come to it without hearing anything about it. I’m going to read this one shortly.

    • Thanks for commenting. I don’t mind terrible choices (we all make them sometimes) but let’s keep them believable 😉. Don’t let me put you off, look forward to hearing what you think.

  2. I too was not as enamoured with Before I Go to Sleep as I expected to be. The premise sounded better than the execution, which may be a little the case with this one. I loved your comment about the ‘poor choices’, and yes, motivation does need to be more plausible. Then again, I do see ostensibly sensible, sane people in real life making appalling choices…

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