Gilding the Lily
By Justine John
What it’s about?
A gripping mystery of jealousy, murder and lies.
An invitation to her estranged, wealthy father’s surprise 75th birthday party in New York sees Amelia and her husband, Jack, set off across the pond to meet a whole new world of family politics.
Amelia, now a successful businesswoman, feels guilty about never liking her father’s women, so does her upmost to give his new socialite partner, Evelyn, the benefit of the doubt. Wouldn’t it be nice if they could just all get along? But there’s something very dark, determined and dangerous about her…
When Amelia’s father, Roger, becomes ill, Jack grows suspicious that there is more to it. Amelia understands why, but no one else will believe them. They travel back to America to piece together the puzzle, but when Roger goes missing, the couple are driven to their wits’ end. It takes a DEA officer and a secret assassin to bring them answers, but the ruthless truth is something no one expected…
What I think:
This is a book full of sinister behaviour and twists. It is not always clear who the reader should be trusting.
Amelia and Roger’s relationship has always been distant which allows his partner Evelyn to drive an even bigger wedge between them. After a disastrous birthday celebration, Evelyn seems more intent than ever on keeping them apart. And while to the outside, her actions seem to be out of love and concern for his health, their family suspect she may have other motives.
Amelia and her husband Jack have a close relationship and are very supportive of each other as they travel between America and England trying to resolve the situation and get to the truth.
I did get a bit frustrated with both Roger and Amelia and their lack of clear communication at times but as Evelyn is clearly a master of manipulation I gave them then benefit of the doubt.
Evelyn is an absolutely fascinating character. Her back story and her past is slowly revealed to the reader – not necessarily the other characters – and although she is manipulative and selfish and ruthlessly ambitious, it does give the reader some insights into her character and an understanding of some of her actions.
The book is really well structured. the prologue at the beginning gives you a first person account from a funeral. But you have no idea who is speaking and whose funeral they are attending. This hooks the reader straight away. The epilogue takes you back to the funeral and throws in some great twists.
Overall this is an enjoyable read that is part domestic drama part psychological thriller with so unexpected twists.
If you are interested in reading Gilding the Lily use the link here
About the author:
After thirty years in corporate life in London, half of which was running a successful events company, I decided to take a chance to write the novel that was ‘in me’ since I was a child. Gilding the Lily is the result of this and is a domestic noir story which I hope will keep you on the edge of your chair/sofa/bed/train/plane-seat….
Check out Justine’s website: click here
Thank you to Love Books Tours and Justine John for inviting me to take part in the blog tour and gifting me a copy of the ebook.