Thursday, 23 March 2017

EXPOSURE by Rose Edmunds @RoseEdmunds #RBRT

4 out of 5 stars

On Amazon UK HERE
On Goodreads HERE

How I discovered this book: It was a submission to Rosie Amber's Book Review Team, of which I am a member.

This is the standalone sequel to Concealment, which I read two years ago; I have the worst memory in the world, so Exposure read as a one-off to me.  Thus, I can confirm that you don't need to read Concealment first, though of course it's always helpful ~ and I think it might be equally as interesting to read it afterwards....

I'd describe this novel as half way between a financial and a psychological thriller.  Occasionally the financial terminology went over my head, but it's written in such a way that I got the gistOne thing I did like very much was the way the novel was structured; there are lots of point of view and situation changes at just the right time, it's extremely well-edited, with plenty of dangling, suspenseful threads at the ends of chapters to make you think, "I wonder what's going to happen there....?"  The whole novel is dialogue-driven; there is little narrative, and the pace never lets up.  Murder, deception, financial fraud, international skullduggery, toxic relationships ~ it has all the ingredients of a popular page-turner.

Rose Edmunds' Amy shows clever characterisation; she is bound to cause definite reactions amongst those who read her.  The daughter of a hoarder, she grew up with all sorts of psychological problems that led her to being exceptionally ambitious and obsessed with the material, and the outward show of success.  In the last book, circumstances came together to make all this come crashing down, and Exposure deals with the new, more self-aware Amy who is still trying to deal with the remnants of the old.  She's not particularly likeable; she knows it's nasty and superficial of her to judge a female colleage on being (horrors!) 20 lbs overweight and wearing the 'wrong' clothes, but she can't help it.  She's unsympathetic to the woman whose husband was in love with her - she tries to overcome the self-destructive within her, but always struggles.  Her complex character makes for some interesting relationship dynamics, indeed, and we learn more about her backstory in this book, too. 

My favourite character was financial blogger Toby Marchpole ~ I was most interested in his wife, an old schoolfriend of Amy's, and their marriage.  I also enjoyed Amy's observations about the dreadful Pedley, her boss for part of the book (when she goes undercover.... I'll leave you to find out about that!).

It's a well thought out plot, and I'm sure readers of smart, fast-paced contemporary thrillers will enjoy it very much ~ there's certainly no opportunity to get bored!

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