Sunday, April 21, 2019

Book Review: The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald

Title: The Night Olivia Fell
Author: Christina McDonald
Publication Date: February 5th 2019
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
In the vein of Big Little Lies and Reconstructing Amelia comes an emotionally charged domestic suspense novel about a mother unraveling the truth behind how her daughter became brain dead. And pregnant.

A search for the truth. A lifetime of lies.

In the small hours of the morning, Abi Knight is startled awake by the phone call no mother ever wants to get: her teenage daughter Olivia has fallen off a bridge. Not only is Olivia brain dead, she’s pregnant and must remain on life support to keep her baby alive. And then Abi sees the angry bruises circling Olivia’s wrists.

When the police unexpectedly rule Olivia’s fall an accident, Abi decides to find out what really happened that night. Heartbroken and grieving, she unravels the threads of her daughter’s life. Was Olivia’s fall an accident? Or something far more sinister?

Christina McDonald weaves a suspenseful and heartwrenching tale of hidden relationships, devastating lies, and the power of a mother’s love. With flashbacks of Olivia’s own resolve to uncover family secrets, this taut and emotional novel asks: how well do you know your children? And how well do they know you?

My Review:
I had been wanting to read The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald for awhile. I was beyond thrilled when I was able to borrow the eBook from my library. Luckily, the book lived up to the hype I had built in my mind.

I found the plot of The Night Olivia Fell to be very intriguing and well written. There were so many feelings with this novel. I enjoyed reading things from Abi's perspective and then going back in time to read flashbacks in Olivia's perspective. I found myself trying to decide if Olivia really was murdered or if she killed herself. There were so many times I thought I had figured out who pushed Olivia just to be wrong. I did find myself hoping that by some miracle, Olivia would go back to being the same before she fell off the bridge. (Hope springs eternal with me.) This was more than just the mystery of Olivia's fall. Olivia was also trying to figure out who her father was, and there was also Olivia's blossoming romance with Derrick. There were a few plot twists which were enjoyable. My only complaint is that I wish there would have been information on the court case. I just felt that I needed closure and to make sure justice was served. Other than that, I felt like the story was written perfectly.

I felt that the characters in The Night Olivia Fell were very fleshed out and realistic. My heart went out to both Olivia and Abi. I could understand how Abi just wanted to make sure Olivia was safe and doing well, but I could also sympathize with out Olivia felt like Abi was smothering her a lot of the time. Olivia was very much like a typical teenager to begin with, but once she found out she was pregnant, I felt like she really blossomed. Olivia would have been an excellent mother, and it was sweet to see how she was willing to protect her unborn baby. Abi just wanted what was best for Olivia being as she was a single mother. She worked her behind off to make sure Olivia was okay. It was obvious how much Abi loved Olivia. Kendall was a bit of a wild card. I liked her, but I was always wondering if she had an endgame. Gavin was another wild card. I wanted to believe he wouldn't stoop so low as to hurt a young innocent girl, but then the more I read about him, the more I wasn't sure of his character. I started out feeling sorry for Tyler with how much he had going on with him, but I was glad that Olivia chose Derek. Derek seemed to be really sweet, and it was sad that people judged him based on a some stretched truths. 

The pacing was done brilliantly for The Night Olivia Fell. Not once did I ever feel like the story dragged on or was becoming too predictable. I felt as if each page was an adventure which made this book an easy read.

Trigger warnings for The Night Olivia Fell include violence, threats, blackmail, profanity, and a semi-graphic sex scene between a 17 year old girl and her boyfriend.

All in all, The Night Olivia Fell was a great read! It had such an interesting plot as well as fantastically written characters. This book grabs you by the hand and never lets you go. I would definitely recommend The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald to those aged 17+. It's one of those books that leaves you thinking about it long after you've finished it.

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