Book Review: Exquisite

EXQUISITE | Sarah Stovell
10.01.2017 | Orenda Books
Rating: 4/5 stars


Meet Bo Luxton: successful author, happily married mother of two girls living in a picture-perfect Lake District home. Bo has agreed to teach a writing seminar for a week and is busy reviewing applicants when she stumbles upon Alice Dark’s submission. Alice’s writing is genuine and heartfelt, which out of the norm from the retired adult submissions Bo is used to receiving. Bo is instantly drawn to Alice’s writing and thinks she could help mold her in to a successful writer, so she accepts her for the seminar and approves her grant application.

Straight away, I saw this woman’s life and wanted it. The house (it would be big and beautiful), the mountain setting, the family, the talent – God, the talent! – the love.

Alice Dark is everything Bo thought she would be. She’s young, ambitious, and fully equipped with a mouth that knows no filter. Deep down lies a truth to her childhood and strained relationship with her mother, that draws Bo to want to connect with her unlike any other student in her seminar. The chemistry between Alice and Bo is electric and soon is drifting beyond the realm of mentor and student. A relationship is formed between the two that will forever change both of their lives. Is their bond truly what it seems or is it simply a web of lies?

I looked at her. I’d been speaking to this woman for less than half an hour, and in that time, it felt as though she’d stripped off my skin and seen right to the very heart of me. It was exhilarating, in a way. And frightening.

Fans of unreliable narrators and psychological thrillers will be in awe of Sarah Stovell’s EXQUISITE. With face-paced, short chapters that leave the reader wanting to know more, Stovell explores Bo and Alice’s relationship from both of their points of view. Each woman has a different take on what happened between them and what the future looks like. Bo and Alice each have flaws that leave the reader confused about who is innocent and who is guilty. EXQUISITE is a chilling, griping, and edge of your seat read that will leave you second guessing every sentence you read!

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