You Were Made For This – Michelle Sacks

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You Were Made For This is published on 28 June 2018 by HQ and is available to purchase here

‘A chilling, gut-wrenching thriller.’ Helen Fields

A bold, sharp, gripping debut about a couple whose perfect life in the Swedish countryside is not what it seems…

A gripping page-turner for fans of The Couple Next Door, Michelle Sacks’s You Were Made For Thisprovocatively explores the darker side of marriage, motherhood and friendship.

Doting wife, devoted husband, cherished child. Merry, Sam and Conor are the perfect family in the perfect place. Merry adores baking, gardening, and caring for her infant son, while Sam pursues a new career in film. In their idyllic house in the Swedish woods, they can hardly believe how lucky they are. What perfect new lives they’ve built for themselves, away from New York and the events that overshadowed their happiness there.

And then Merry’s closest friend Frank comes to stay. All their lives, the two women have been more like sisters than best friends. And that’s why Frank sees things that others might miss. Treacherous things that unfold behind closed doors.

But soon it’s clear that everyone inside the house has something to hide. And as the truth begins to show through the cracks, Merry, Frank, and Sam grow all the more desperate to keep their picture-perfect lives intact.

My thoughts

You Were Made For This is a clever psychological domestic drama from debut author, Michelle Sacks. It is the kind of read, that will sit very uncomfortably with some readers. Some of the moments of drama are hard to read. For that, I am full of admiration. This is very dark. Sacks delivers a shocking tale of three dysfunctional people, that will make most of the audience squirm. Well done, Michelle Sacks, for particularly emotive powerful prose.

First we are given the fairy tale. We meet a young couple who have emigrated from New York, to the wilds of Sweden. They have a baby. The perfect nuclear family. They have gone back to basics. They are living the dream of self sufficiency. Very soon, we see signs of disharmony. The fairy tale becomes dark. We peer into this and bear witness. It almost feels voyeuristic. We see that the couple are not true to themselves. We get cracks in the surface of this idealistic life, with hints of cruelty and evil. Merry, the young stay at home mother, is smiling and hiding her true feelings. She is dissatisfied. She seems conflicted. She is smug. We struggle to work her out. We meet her husband, Sam. Sam is a former university professor. He is trying to find work, with grandiose ideas of film direction. We see he has complete control over Merry. He lies. He plays the part of the family man. Their strangely addictive dysfunctional relationship is mesmerising. Into this dynamic, comes a third person. Merry’s long term best friend Frances, known as Frank comes to Sweden to visit. Frank sets a disturbing chain of events in motion.

This is a completely refreshing psychological tale. I was totally blown away. I was consumed by the relationship dynamics. It is so different. These are three people, who are very damaged. Their behaviour is odd, frequently manipulative and cruel. There is no one to even slightly like, in this drama. Merry and Sam. Merry and Frank. A disaster waiting to happen.

This is the must read book of 2018 for dangerously toxic relationships. Avoid this, if you are of a very sensitive nature. It may make you cry. It is challenging at times. It is honest. It takes dark and disturbing to new levels. I LOVED it.

Recommended.

 

 

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About Northern Crime

Reviewer with a mind of her own. This is a collection of book reviews, which started in 2014. Mostly crime and odd other genres thrown in. Some I loved. Some I loathed. You get the picture.
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