March 2, 2021

Too Good To Be True

Too Good To Be True

by Carola Lovering

Published March 2, 2021
by St. Martin’s Press

Rating: 5 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Genre: Mystery


Skye is a wealthy woman in her late 20s. She has a group of close girlfriends who she’s steadily watching get married, have children, and settle down and Skye is wanting those things for herself. However, Skye is held back by her OCD – a disease that presents itself in the form of compulsions that she cannot control. Time and again, Skye has been humiliated and hurt by opening up about her disease with men she cares about and she worries that she’s doomed to a life on her own.

Burke is down on his luck. After working for the same financial company for twenty years, he’s unexpectedly let go with only two weeks’ of severance. A wife and three children to care for, he’s desperate for a new source of income. But Burke’s past continues to haunt him. Shortly after his hard work to join a reputable financial firm out of college, Burke made a bad decision and ended up in prison for a year for insider trading. The crime was basically a death sentence to his future in finance, and now that he lost his low paying job at the only firm that would take him in, he seems to be out of options.

Needing an escape, Burke decides to treat himself to a nice weekend away. At the hotel, he sees Skye and is instantly taken in by her beauty. The two strike up a conversation and sparks immediately fly. And so begins Burke’s web of lies to seduce Skye, deceive his wife, and possibly even support his family.


Would you consider this a “twisty” book?

Stephanie: I’m typically the type who professes, “The twistier, the better!!!” And it’s true. But fabulous writing trumps all else. I read so many books with crazy twists that I always play mind games with myself imagining plot twists and looking for evidence and clues that I’m right. I found that here but it actually made me enjoy it even more. Like I was in on it with the author. Covering my mouth and giggling like a child.

Chelsey: This book was full of SO MANY SURPRISES and in all the best ways. I’m often over or underwhelmed by the twists in a book – feeling they are too far fetched or too predictable. But Too Good To Be True was just the right amount of crazy and I couldn’t flip the pages fast enough.

Early reviewers are saying to go into this book blind. Do you agree?

Chelsey: I totally agree that this is one of those books that you should go into as blind as possible. I thought it was so fun watching the story unfold and flipping back and forth between who I trusted and who I was rooting for. I really couldn’t put it down and it kept me up well past my bedtime! Stephanie and I made sure to provide a spoiler free synopsis for those readers who prefer a bit of preview before diving in!

Stephanie: I refuse to give away any spoilers whatsoever so there really isn’t much I can tell you that you haven’t already read in the synopsis! I will say that Too Good To Be True is already on my list of favorite books of 2021 and I don’t see it going anywhere anytime soon. You NEED to read this book.

Tell us something about the book that you really enjoyed.

Stephanie: This book grabbed me by the face from the very first page and never let go. This is one of those books that seems to be… Too Good To Be True. (So sorry… I just had to do it!). Carola Lovering’s writing is truly mesmerizing and a joy to read. I was so sucked in by every. single. page. Lovering writes her characters with so many facets and so much dimension. Even the ones I want to hate, I just can’t.

Chelsey: I completely agree with Stephanie!

I loved the altering viewpoints, timelines and styles of narration. We hear from Skye in real time, Heather (Burke’s wife) back when Burke was courting her, and Burke about six months behind Skye in the form of an electronic diary. The book is also broken up into parts which worked well for the flow.

Lovering did a phenomenal job of creating complex and relatable characters. I felt so attached to them and had such strong feelings toward them that I often felt my blood pressure rising with anxiety as particularly stressful parts arose! I also loved how she handled Skye’s OCD – though it was a debilitating diagnosis in many ways for Skye, we really learn that there’s so much more to her than the label. I also think mental illnesses aren’t portrayed enough in literature, particularly with main characters and in an overall positive light, so this was a fresh and unique approach to normalizing a stigmatizing diagnosis.

Any final thoughts?

Stephanie: This is the kind of book I wish would never end. Thank you so much to St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley for allowing me the incredible privilege of reading this book in advance in exchange for my honest review.

Chelsey: HOLY WOW! I can’t even begin to express how much I enjoyed this book!! Five stars doesn’t do it justice and I have and will be recommending it to everyone I know! Too Good To Be True is definitely my favorite read of 2021 so far and I imagine it will be in my top ten (maybe top five!!) of the year!

I second Stephanie’s appreciativeness to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for an advanced copy of this exceptional novel.

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