The Life She Left Behind by Nicole Trope

When I wake up in the middle of the night, it’s not a sound that disturbs me. It’s a feeling. Silently, I creep to my daughter’s room, breathing a sigh of relief when I see her sleeping, her night-light twirling, butterfly shapes moving their pink wings. Quickly, I lock the door. I won’t let anything happen to my little girl.

You tell him everything. The husband you adore, the father of your child, your best friend. He knows, just by looking at your sage-green eyes, when something is wrong. The two of you can communicate with a glance or a touch of the hand.

Except what if you can’t?

What if your happy marriage has plastered over one huge lie? A lie you have even started to believe yourself, in order to survive? What if you have a secret, something you have hidden from your beloved husband and your strawberry-scented baby girl, to keep them safe? What if the guilt has kept you up, night after night, for as long as you can remember? What happens when suddenly, after twenty-eight years, that secret refuses to stay buried? What will you do now everyone you love, everything you cherish, is in harm’s way?

*This book contains possible triggering subjects of abuse – keep yourself safe before all else, even a book*

Title:  The Life She Left Behind
Series:
Author:  Nicole Trope
Genre:  Women’s Fiction/Mystery
Published:  July 1, 2020
Publisher:  Bookouture
My Rating:  4 stars

*possible trigger warning; abuse*

The Life She Left Behind‘ is a chilling novel, one that is all too real for many people… female and male alike.  Told from several points of view as we begin, it may take a little bit to fall into a natural rhythm of who exactly is speaking, but it didn’t take all that long for it to begin to flow for me.  I also feel that this story could have triggering aspects for some readers, hence the triggering warning at the beginning of this review (I’d rather act as if it’s possible than harm someone).

Today Rachel has a good life, a loving, adoring husband, a daughter she would do anything for… yet the past lives behind her eyes, in her compulsive double-checking on Beth as she sleeps, in the knowledge that she is not at all what her husband, Ben, believes her to be for Rachel is holding onto secrets that will not stay buried for much longer.

I’ve chosen to not go into any details in this review.  I firmly believe that ‘The Life She Left Behind‘ is a powerful story that each reader needs to experience firsthand for not everyone will read it in the same mindset.  While that is, of course, true for any book it is particularly true for this one for when Rachel’s past begins to interfere with her present and her future how that plays out should be experienced in each reader’s unique way.  I will say that while I guessed who the culprit was that knowledge (or guess) did not affect how I viewed the rest of the story.

This story is emotional in differing ways.  I felt for what Rachel was going through.  I was angry on her behalf, scared for her family, and on the edge throughout by not knowing what was coming at them next.  It is a compelling story that I would recommend.  This would make a chilling movie.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher, Bookouture, via NetGalley. That does not change what I think of this story.  It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*

Available in paperback, audio, and for your favorite e-reader, mine is the Kindle

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