Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Review: Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll


In a riveting debut novel that reads like Prep meets Gone Girl, a young woman is determined to create the perfect life—husband, home, and career—until a violent incident from her past threatens to unravel everything and expose her most shocking secret of all. Twenty-eight-year-old New Yorker Ani FaNelli seems to have it all: she’s a rising star at The Women’s Magazine, impossibly fit, perfectly groomed, and about to marry Luke Harrison, a handsome blueblood. But behind that veneer of perfection lies a vulnerability that Ani holds close and buries deep—a very violent and public trauma from her past that has left her constantly trying to reinvent herself. And only she knows how far she would go to keep her secrets safe.

When a documentary producer invites Ani to tell her side of the chilling incident that took place when she was a teenager at the prestigious Bradley School, she hopes it will be an opportunity for public vindication. Armed with the trappings of success—expensive clothes, high-powered byline, a massive engagement ring—she is determined to silence the whispers of suspicion and blame from her past, and prove once and for all how far she’s come since Bradley. She’ll even let them film her lavish wedding on Nantucket, the final step in her transformation.

But perfection doesn’t come without cost. As the wedding and filming converge, Ani’s meticulously crafted facade begins to buckle and crack—until an explosive revelation offers her a final chance at redemption, even as it rocks her picture-perfect world.

Publication Date: May 12, 2015

I have seen a trend lately in women’s fiction books where the narrator is unlikable and angsty, but the reader is still supposed to relate to her and sympathize with what happens to her. I loved the plot behind Luckiest Girl Alive, but when you care less about what happens to the main character, I believe a lot of the emotional impact of a story can be lost.

On a positive note, Luckiest Girl Alive is a great story. I love when a book grabs you and won’t let you go and that’s what happened here. The author did a great job of teasing out what had happened to Ani back in high school and how the events shaped the person she had become. The flashbacks scenes were my favorite and I found high school TifAni much more relatable than her adult self.

The book is pretty dark with themes like rape, bullying, and murder. And a few of the twists totally shocked me! I love when an author can throw something at you that you’d normally never see coming. The last half of the book kept me up super late reading.

I guess my main and only issue was my inability to relate to TifAni. She was such a shrew and although her past was horrible, I didn’t think it gave her license to be such a raging bitch to everyone in her life. Her obsessions with dieting and labels were also an annoyance.

I was leaning towards three stars, but as I write this review, I realize there were more likes than dislikes. I don’t agree with the summary’s comparison to Gone Girl, but the book is still a very good read.

Rating: 4/5 Stars

Thanks to the publisher for a copy of the novel for review!


  1. It's nice to find a book that actually has twists that you don't see coming. :) The plot does sound a little general to me, like it's been done a whole bunch of times. I do love the cover tho.

  2. Glad that you found things to enjoy even though it wasn't a good comparison in the synopsis

  3. Hard when you're on the fence, huh? I have that problem when writing reviews sometimes, too. I think I know what the rating is, then it spins around and bites me. LOL! You gotta join the review team. :)

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