Publish Date: February 5, 2019
“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.”
Molly and Liza have always been close in a way that people envy. Even after Molly married Daniel, both considered Liza an honorary member of their family. But after Liza moved away, things grew more strained than anyone wanted to admit—in the friendship and the marriage.
When Daniel goes away on business, Molly and Liza plan to reconnect with a nice long video chat over wine after the kids are in bed. But when Molly leaves the room to check on a crying child, a man in a mask enters, throwing Liza into a panic—then her screen goes black.
When Liza finally reaches Molly, her reply is icy and terse, insisting everything is fine. Liza is still convinced something is wrong, that her friend is in danger. But after an all-night drive to help her ends in a brutal confrontation, Liza is sure their friendship is over—completely unaware that she’s about to have a near miss of her own. And Molly, refusing to deal with what’s happened, won’t turn to Daniel, either.
But none of them can go on pretending. Not after this.
Forget You Know Me exposes the wounds of people who’ve grown apart, against their will. Best friends, separated by miles. Spouses, hardened by neglect. A mother, isolated by pain. The man in the mask will change things for them all.
But who was he?
And will he be back?
This is a story that is jump started by a BFF video chat and a masked man. Liza lives in Chicago, and Molly lives in Cincinnati. These longtime friends arrange a virtual “Girls Night Out” at their respective homes to catch up over a glass of wine.
It starts with a fast thriller vibe that is slightly sinister, but then morphs into a slow and steady pace. The masked man fades into the background, and brought to the forefront are the themes of female friendship, marital discord, family, finances, identity, home, secrets, lies, scandal, and personal crisis. It’s a character study of two women trying to find their way in life when things fall apart.
I didn’t like the characters in this book and had a hard time identifying with them, but they are well developed and by the end I knew them well. I didn’t agree with their actions, but Liza and Molly’s separate situations are relatable and found myself wondering how I’d face them. How they handle their issues is a test of their own character and the strength of their friendship.
By the end, the masked man’s identity is revealed and all of the loose ends are tied together with a satisfying conclusion. I liked that the characters changed their perspectives, examined their flaws and decisions, and opened up to doing things differently than they had in the past.
Jessica Strawser is an excellent storyteller and I enjoyed her last book, Not That I Could Tell (my review here). Some have called them thrillers, but these two books are really more of the women’s fiction genre and a domestic drama. If you start the book with this perspective, then you will enjoy it.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Note: I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.