The Baby Shower - S.E. Lynes

Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from NetGalley

Official Blurb:

She doesn’t know I’m there, watching her in the mirror. She slides her hand under her blouse. And then I see something impossible. She isn’t pregnant…
She bursts into my life like a storm, and nothing is the same again. She seems so perfect, with her lilting laugh and her beautiful face. One by one, I watch as my friends fall under her spell.
Only I seem to suspect something. Only I see that her smiles don’t reach her cold, furious eyes. And when I’m accused of things I didn’t do, when my home is vandalized, I know she’s behind it. But she only lets her mask slip when no one is looking, so if I say anything, I’ll look crazy.
So when the baby shower comes around I’m there, sitting on a velvet sofa in a posh hotel room, surrounded by balloons. We share gifts, we pour small glasses of champagne, and she beams, her bump just visible under her bright red shirt.
But that afternoon, I finally learn the unbelievable truth.
There is no baby…

My Thoughts:

This was quite a slow read, but fortunately, the story was interesting enough to keep me reading.
Jane is quite a strong character, considering how she feels about the situation she finds herself in. I really liked how eloquent she was when berating Sophie over her attitude. She didn’t just whimper and apologise; she stuck to her guns even if that meant she would end up alienating Sophie even more. She was scared of this happening, but she wasn’t willing to compromise her integrity just to keep a friendship that obviously didn’t mean as much to the other person.
There are only small things contributing to Jane’s paranoia and life falling apart, which is why the book’s pace is relatively slow. There aren’t tidbit cliffhangers to keep you reading. If you haven’t already guessed the ending, it is worth waiting for. Unfortunately, I had managed to guess most of what was going on, so I felt like I was missing out on the reward for persevering!
This was an interesting read about friendships, especially ones in a grown-up circle of women. It’s like Jane says there are books about break-ups with a partner but nothing on coping with the loss of a friend. I’ve been through a few friend’ break-ups,’ and I’ve always felt like I never really got closure or understood what happened, so it made for a clarifying read to know that I’m not alone when it comes to these matters.
Overall, despite the book’s slow pace, I still enjoyed it, and it’s been a few days since I finished it, and it is still in my mind. I always think this is a good testament to the effect a book has made on you. A four-star read from me.

The Baby Shower
by S.E. Lynes
Date Started
27th January 2022
Date Finished
31st January 2022