This is Hamilton’s first published book and it is an interesting and readable opener. Her aim is to tell the story of a young woman whose mind is warped due to a traumatic experience that happened to her when she was ten years old. The events are narrated by Juliette in their entirety and it is her thoughts and ideas that are featured in the story.
The book begins with a man that Juliette has been with for several months telling her that their affair is over and that she must leave the apartment they share. It is Juliette’s reaction to this decision by Nathan, the man she was living with, that begins the tale and establishes the direction of events. Juliette decides that this decision is the wrong one for Nathan and begins a plan to retake him. He is an airline pilot, and she goes as far as getting a job as a cabin attendant with the same airline he works for. Successful at this Juliette sets up meetings with Nathan, moves to get rid of the new girlfriend he is seeing, and manipulates events to make sure that she gets her way.
The picture of Juliette as a person with a God complex is quite well done by the author and very well paints her as someone that cannot come to grips with any situation in which she is not correct in her own actions. The reader is pointed towards the bad that other individuals do to her and how Juliette must work hard to turn the situation around to make sure she does get her way.
The novel makes for a compelling read with one detracting feature. The front piece outline indicates that there is a surprise ending in store for the reader. Sort of yes, but underwhelming over all and more than a minor detraction and does leave the reader more than a little unsatisfied.
3/19 Paul Lane
THE PERFECT GIRLFRIEND by Karen Hamilton. Graydon House; Original edition (March 26, 2019). ISBN 978-1525831508. 352p.