Juliette seems to have it all. A successful, jet-setting career as an air hostess. A loving, handsome boyfriend in Nate. She also has a sociopathic streak, and delusions that she can bend the world to her ways.
Nate broke up with Juliette six months ago, and despite having a new relationship, and despite repeatedly warning Juliette to stay out of his life, she is unable and unwilling to listen. As the story develops, and Juliette becomes increasingly desperate to have Nate back in her life, at any cost, she changes and becomes increasingly deranged.
Following Nate on social media, she knows every facet of his life, better even than those closest to him, certainly some family members, and his new girlfriend. Even though she and Nate were together for less than half a year, she still feels that they should be together.
This is a psychological thriller, and similar to other recent hits within the genre, such as The Girl on The Train, it is only told from one view-point, Juliette’s, and as the story goes on, we learn that she is not really one for letting things go, so every little gripe, every wrong word, every wrong look is stored for later retribution.
The ending of the book shows that Juliette has no empathy, no feeling, and her actions, which would have shocked any one else, she just sees as being damage, another piece of the puzzle falling into place. The novel starts quickly, and is a thrill-ride of escalating action throughout, and although a lot of the set piece and coincidences in the book feel contrived, it gets from one plot point to the next in very quick fashion.
If you like your books to be a roller-coaster ride of thrills, this will be for you. However, Juliette is a truly terrifying fictional character, and we just have to hope that we never meet anyone like her in real life.
Ben Macnair 3*
The Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton
Wildfire 9781472244277 pbk Jan 2019