The Ex - S.E. Lynes

Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from NetGalley

Official Blurb:

The love of your life… or a deadly mistake?
It’s hard, meeting your ex after so much time apart. You remember the tears and accusations, the desperate look on his face as he punched the wall, but you try not to show it. You smile politely, even while your heart beats faster.
You watch as he looks down into the stroller, at the beautiful blond-haired blue-eyed baby kicking his little legs in the sunshine, whose innocent smile lights up your world.
You see his face change. You know what he’s thinking.
The next day he calls. His voice is shaking. He wants the truth. Is it his child?
You hesitate, your throat dry, good and bad memories swirling in your mind. You’ve missed him so much… but can you ever trust him again?
You decide that the most important thing is doing what’s right for baby Tom. But months later, when the sirens wail in the night, you have to admit: you never thought either of you would go this far…

My Thoughts:

This was another excellent chewing-gum-for-the-brain book. It didn’t require much thought; you could just sit back, see where it would take you, and enjoy it.
Luckily, I am in the mood for these types of books at the moment. I think it’s the heat; I just don’t want to have to put much thought into what I’m reading while I’m literally melting! This was perfect for this weather, especially as there were a few sections I could almost gloss over when Sam was taking care of the baby. It got a little monotonous, and I was hoping it wouldn’t be all the book was about.
You could tell straight away that it wouldn’t be as it seemed. Naomi was definitely building up to something, and she was being way too sweet compared to how you were lead to believe she was before he left her. No one changes that much in such a short space of time. So it was exciting to see how the story would develop.
The book’s second half is definitely the best and starts to pick up the pace. The ending was just brilliant. It all unfolded so fast that I found myself rereading a few pages just to ensure I took it all in (again, the heat was probably slowing my brain down too). Everything that had happened leading up to Joyce and the big finale had been so subtle that it felt more of a shocker when everything was revealed. Even though you know something will be shocking, it had me gripped to the edges of the pages.
The very very end (so the last few pages) was a little unnecessary, and changed the book from a psych thriller to a more romantic one, and I just don’t think it was needed; just the prospect of it would have been enough.
I do need to address the COVID/lockdown element. When I first started reading, I inwardly groaned as I really don’t like to be reminded of lockdown. I don’t like it to creep into my escapism moments of reading. However, it was all relevant to the story. Without lockdown, a lot of the story wouldn’t have been plausible, so it was integrated well, and I didn’t mind it being there in the end. I did tear up at a funeral in the book where everyone lines the street; this is precisely how it was for my father-in-law’s in September 2020; all of his workmates stood outside as we drove past. This was beautifully written about and portrayed real-life perfectly.
Overall, a good read and a solid four stars.

The Ex
by S.E. Lynes
Date Started
11th August 2022
Date Finished
14th August 2022