Jessica Hamilton | What You Never Knew

what you never knew jessica hamilton

The Book: 

What You Never Knew by Jessica Hamilton
Published April 13th, 2021 by Crooked Lane Books
Date read: May 1, 2021 (audio)

The Characters: 

June and her deceased sister May
Their childhood friend Ezra

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Buy it on | Amazon

The Plot (from Goodreads):

Idyllic Avril lsland, owned by the Bennett family, where their hundred-year-old cottage sat nestled in acres of forest. Forty-year-old June Bennett believed that the island had been sold after the summer of her father’s disappearance when she was only twelve years old. It’s months after the shocking death of her older sister May in a fatal car accident, that June finds out that the cottage was never sold. Avril Island is still owned by the Bennett family and now it’s hers.

Still reeling from the grief of losing her sister, June travels back to Avril lsland in search of answers. As she digs, she learns that the townspeople believe her father may have, in fact, been murdered rather than abandoning his family in the dead of night, as she was led to believe by her mother. And that’s when she begins to notice strange things happening on the island–missing family possessions showing up on her bed, doors open when she had locked them closed. It takes June no time at all to realize that her childhood summers at Avril Island were not at all what they had seemed to be. 

Click here for book spoilers for What You Never Knew
Book spoilers ahead–if you haven’t yet read What You Never Knew, I suggest you turn back now.

The Ending:

Ezra’s mom was the one coming into June’s house at night and replacing the cross. May had killed their father–she pushed him in anger and he fell and hit his head on the fireplace and died. April and West covered up the death, but Willa killed West later on. West and April had been having an affair, and West was June’s real dad.

The Review: 

What You Never Knew is a slow-burn mystery crossed with family drama, told from the perspective of June and her deceased sister May, who watches over June as she grieves. I’m a sucker for a home renovation setting, so I loved the atmosphere of this creepy abandoned island.

I’m not normally one for ghost stories, but I really like how it was done in this book. The ghost part was tasteful and believable. It served to provide another perspective rather than a cop-out explanation for why spooky things were happening.

I really felt for June. She has lost her mother and her sister, and is beginning to discover that her childhood was nothing like the way she remembered it. Her character had a lot of depth for a thriller, and this book explores grief in a very thoughtful way.

This audiobook was high quality and I enjoyed the narrator. It was easy to speed this one up, which I love. I prefer when the narrator speaks clearly enough for me to listen at 3x speed. This was a very enjoyable story to listen to while completing my mundane household chores!

what you never knew jessica hamilton

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