"Something She's Not Telling Us" | Reviewed by Susan Ferguson
Updated: Oct 15, 2020
“Something She’s Not Telling Us,” is a tense, suspenseful domestic thriller by Darcey Bell with a twist halfway through. The story and chapters alternate between two women who aren't very likeable.
Charlotte has the perfect Manhattan life. She's an up and coming floral designer. Her small floral shop is taking off and getting successful. Her husband Eli made a fortune in finance and then retired. He now spends his time pursuing his interest in the theater. They have a smart 5-year-old daughter named Daisy who is the love of Charlotte’s life. Charlotte is overprotective and has “mommy” issues from her own rough childhood. Charlotte has a younger brother, Rocco, who she has always watched out for.
Rocco has been a bad “picker” when it comes to women. His old girlfriends include a drug addict, a kleptomaniac and a liar. But now Rocco has a new flame, one he’s anxious to have his sister meet. Ruth is normal, and may even be the one for Rocco, therefore Charlotte’s approval of Ruth is important to Rocco.
The more serious Ruth and Rocco become, the more worried Charlotte gets. Things just don’t add up, don’t seem what they appear to be. As the story progresses the author provides flashbacks of both Ruth and Charlotte’s childhood, neither of which were good.
Ruth was raised by her grandparents, a couple who very strict often locking Ruth in the basement as punishment. Ruth never had much and is envious of Charlotte’s perfect life. Ruth hopes that she and Rocco can have that same kind of life together. Readers eventually realize that Ruth tells lies and is mentally ill. She is determined to win Charlotte over and when she is unsuccessful she learns Charlotte’s deepest secret and holds it over her.
This novel is a fast read—the story of two women who have secrets, who tell lies, and who have much to lose. It is a tale of deceit, lies, trauma and mental illness. It was hard to put the book down, despite its far from likeable characters and abrupt ending. But overall I enjoyed “Something She’s Not Telling Us.”