An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

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“Money is vitally important to you. It appears to be an underpinning of your ethical code. When money and morality intersect, the results can illuminate intriguing truths about human character. People are motivated to break their moral compasses for a variety of primal reasons — survival, hate, love, envy, passion. And money.”

When freelance makeup artist Jessica Farris learns about a study that a well-respected psychologist is conducting that pays $500 to participants just to answer a few ethics and morality questions, she knows she has to get the gig.

Even if it means telling a small lie.

After all, that money can pay her next month’s rent and her sister’s therapy sessions.

What she thinks is a one-time thing turns into recurring sessions with beautiful, compassionate, elegant, and elusive Dr. Shields. The money just keeps coming, but more and more are expected of her, too.

The more Jessica is immersed in Dr. Shields’s “study,” the more lost and out of control everything feels.

Is it really just ethics and morality that the doctor wants to explore, or is there a deeper and more personal reason behind all of it?

What a page-turner this book is! It’s not as intense and twisty as The Wife Between Us, but it will keep you reading until you’ve gotten all the answers to your burning questions.

It will also make you think how you would answer the same questions and whether you would make the same decisions.

The main character, Jessica, may be flawed and weak at times. But what I love about her is that she thinks and feels and cares and simply does not allow shitty things to happen to her just like that.

In short, her thoughts and actions did not make me roll my eyes, scream into a pillow, and throw the book across the room.

Suspenseful, intriguing, and deliciously wicked. I give this book four glowing stars!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/ 5

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Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

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Women would willingly tear off their limbs just to live the kind of life Ani FaNelli lives. Ani (pronounced Ah-nee) has the beauty and the elegance that can stop traffic; the poise and the attitude that make people wonder what she does for a living and who she is in a relationship with, the fashion sense that not every woman can pull off, and the cutthroat determination to make it to the top no matter the cost.

You think you know Ani FaNelli, but you truly don’t. Not a lot of people do. Because before Ani became the most sought-after sex columnist for New York City’s The Women’s Magazine, before she became the blushing bride-to-be of the very eligible, the very handsome, and the very moneyed Luke Harrison, and before she secured that posh and exclusive Tribeca zip code, Ani FaNelli was TifAni FaNelli, a young and innocent girl who lived through an ordeal so horrifying that no fourteen-year-old high school girl should ever have to.

This close to her wedding day, Ani finally decides that she’s ready to talk about what happened that year at The Bradley School. Agreeing to be interviewed for this documentary, on her own terms, sounds just like the perfect arrangement. It’s time to heal old wounds and finally start over with a clean slate, with a powerful new last name and an influential new husband.

But there are just some things you can never really run away from, no matter how much you think you’re doing well in life, and how much you think you have all the things you thought you had always wanted.

Surprisingly, I enjoyed reading Luckiest Girl Alive, but not without thinking it was a waste of time at first, or that this bitch heroine should just die a slow and painful death. So glad I stuck around to finish it, though. Just imagine a present-day Carrie Bradshaw, only cold, narcissistic, ruthless, and always hungry, minus the tacky blond hair and the cigarettes. Ani FaNelli cracked me up with her snarkiness and self-loathing, and the cynical way she viewed life, love, sex, husbands, and food. But this book burns like acid, and you’re in for some really shocking slew of scandal and secrets. You will love-hate Ani and face palm yourself through every bad decision she makes. She will keep you on your toes, have you gritting your teeth, and shaking your head. She will hurt you and break you, and even make you feel just a bit sorry for her. It’s something I couldn’t really put down, but it’s far from perfect. I guess it succeeded in hooking me to the story long enough to get to that ending, which was okay, but not really.