“Riptide” by Margaret Carroll ★★★★

This is a perfect example of do not judge a book by its cover. I was expecting this to be a typical romantic suspense novel but it was really so much more. Excellent mystery and nebulous ending which you will either love or hate.

Christina Cardiff has been unhappily married for 16 years to her cheating husband, Jason, who comes from an extremely wealthy family who has never accepted her less fortunate background. Over the years, she has not only had to deal with her uncaring husband but with his family as well, including sitting at dinners where her mother- and sister-in-law have invited other women to entice Jason away from her. She has stayed with him for the sake of their son, who is being groomed to fit in with the family. Christina has a battle on her hands to keep them from stealing him from her, especially since she is an alcoholic and drug addict.

In desperation to change her life, she checks herself into an exclusive rehab center and is only a week into the program when she receives word that her husband has been found dead in their pool. This strikes her as strange because he avoids all water due to a near-drowning incident when he was only five. She returns home to face homicide detectives investigating the death and to the comforting arms of her new boyfriend (the first affair of her marriage).

As she is struggling to maintain her sobriety while burying her husband, fending off the police and her in-laws, and trying to get her son out of their clutches, information slowly emerges that makes her doubt herself and the people around her, and regret the poor choices she’s made in life.

Riptide image of currents

Should you find yourself in a riptide, it is recommended that you not try to swim against it or into it. You should swim parallel to shore to break free as noted in the image above.

Riptide by Margaret Carroll


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