Novel Of The Week - The Perfect Present by Karen Swan


Finally, after almost 2 months of absence, here we are again with the "Novel of the Week" series!

The novel I want to write about this week is The Perfect Present by Karen Swan
This is my first novel from this author, but it has been highly recommended from a friend of mine, so let's begin with the story!

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Laura Cunningham lives a quite and ordinary life and she's more than OK with that. She never took a risk, not even a single decision on impulse. She lives in Charrington (County of Suffolk) with her boyfriend Jack. He once proposed to her, but not even that question was able to make her chill. She has some secrets from her past that keeps haunting her and she doesn't want to share them with nobody.

She creates very expensive custom jewleries in a work studio near the sea. She works there with Fee, her 23 years old assistent and, actually, only female friend.
One day, Robert Blake walks in her studio an required a seven-charms necklace for his wife Cat. Theoretically the task was easy: interview the seven most important people in Cat's life and make a charm for each one that represented the bond they have with her. The first problem came right with this request: Robert wanted the necklace done in 3 weeks!! At first Laura thought it impossible and refuse the order, but then she changed her mind and accepts it. 

The first inteview was with Cat's childhood friend Kitty, mother of 5 kids, leaving with her husband in the same farm she grew up in. Kitty reveals that Cat is an amazing person, very sensible and always ready to help anyone...Also Orlando (Cat's personal trainer and business partner) gives Laura the same description, so she starts thinking she's too perfect to be true.  

But these interviews began to be more difficult of what Laura thought when (after a few  unanswered phone calls) she goes to Cat' sister house and she's send away 

without explanations.
When she gets home after this, Robert calls her telling that he and Cat are going to their chalet in Verbier (Switzerland) for the week end and 
that Cat's two friends who lives in the continent are going to be there as well, so she is invited
to join them. It's a last minute thing and when she tells Jack, he's not happy because Laura decided everything without asking his opinion. 
When Laura arrives at the airport, she finally meets Cat and she's exactly how Kitty and Orlando had described her : stunning like a top model, gentle and kind. 
Cat quickly take Laura under her wing, but when Laura interviews Cat's college best friend
(Samantha) finds out that not everything that sparkle is gold and that Robert and Cat are not the happy couple they seem to be...
Also, Cat and Laura start to became friends and Laura is fascinated from this woman and things seem to be so easy with her...but Laura is about to discover that Cat never does anything without asking something back.

I have to admit that this novel surprised me in a positive way: I thought it was a romantic novel, all sparkles, glam and glitters. 

On the contrary, it is an analysis on how our past can affect our future. And for how many years we can keep our thoughts for ourselves before they became a problem....

My vote : 8/10

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