12:30 pm EST, February 2, 2016

‘He Will Be My Ruin’ book review: Love, money, and antiques tell a twisted tale

He Will Be My Ruin by K.A. Tucker is a dark and twisted mystery that you should definitely put on your to-read list.

If you haven’t taken a chance on a book outside your typical fare, we suggest you make an exception for He Will Be My Ruin. Who doesn’t love a good mystery now and again, huh?

About ‘He Will Be My Ruin’

Maggie Sparkes, heir to the Sparkes Energy fortune, has returned to New York to sort through the belongings of her childhood best friend, Celine. Celine was the only child of the woman responsible for raising Maggie while her parents globe-trotted and prioritized work over their child. Not horrible people, just not child-rearers, Maggie clung to Celine and her mother, Rosa.

The three women remained close over the years, close enough that after Celine’s body was found dead in her apartment of an apparent prescription drug overdose, Rosa contacted Maggie to see about settling her daughter’s estate.

Celine’s “suicide” doesn’t feel right to Maggie. She knew her friend, and there’s no way in Maggie’s mind that Celine would have ever gotten low enough to kill herself, especially with her mother just having gone into remission from cancer.

Maggie takes it upon herself to look into Celine’s life while packing everything away in boxes. As she sorts through boxes, reads Celine’s journals, and puzzles at some unexplained missing items, Maggie just can’t shake the feeling that something is wrong here.

If the police refuse to look harder into Celine’s clearcut ‘suicide,’ then Maggie’s just going to have to do it herself, with the help of a few dedicated strangers along the way.

He Will Be My Ruin K.A. Tucker cover

‘He Will Be My Ruin’ review

Fans of K.A. Tucker will not doubt that this book was always lingering on the edges of her style. Each of her previous works, the Burying Water series, the Ten Tiny Breaths series, and the Casual Enchantment series, included tightly woven plotlines that gripped you in their reality. This story is just a little rougher than her usual fare.

When you first begin He Will Be My Ruin you see whom Maggie suspects may have had a hand in her friend’s death. You aren’t sure if Maggie is reliable at first, as everyone around her reminds her that there are plenty of legitimate suicide cases every year that the families never see coming. Those families often go into denial and try to find alternative reasons for their loved ones deaths, just like Maggie.

When the evidence starts piling up, you know Maggie’s on to something. You start to see things through her eyes, just to be surprised again when the novel twists and turns toward its conclusion, which you are startled to believe is happening as you flip the pages. We knew that somehow Maggie was going to end up in a locked car trunk, thanks to the prologue, but who and how she got there is just the end of a long, twisted mystery that manages to surprise you just when you think you have it all figured out.

He Will Be My Ruin K.A. Tucker cover title

We highly recommend that K.A. Tucker fans check out this book. It may not be as romantically driven as some of her previous series, but we can guarantee you won’t be disappointed by this story. Maggie Sparkes is a determined and feisty character that we wish we had in our corner when times get tough. She refuses to back down from the fight, even when police, family, and incredibly, a few strangers tell her to give it up.

Maggie is everything you want her to be. She’s ferocious, persistent, kind, and flawed. She has imperfections that keep her from doing everything right, and conditions that are a colossal hindrance some of the time. It was refreshing to read such a substantial and real character fight for justice for a woman she has always considered family.

He Will Be My Ruin may be a small departure from K.A. Tucker’s former books, but it delivers on its premise and begs you to keep reading. The chapters fly by faster and faster as you devour the story, and by the end, you’ll be glad you gave Maggie Sparkes and her quirky comrades a shot. We sure are. Oh, and give Ruby our love.

He Will Be My Ruin is available now. Get your copy from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Indiebound today.

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