Book Reviews

Book Review: The Soulmate

By Sally Hepworth

331 Pages

Publication Date: April 4, 2023

Pippa and Gabe Gerard live in the house of their dreams in a small seaside town.  What drew Gabe to the house, and is the only downside for Pippa, is its immediate proximity to the cliffs.  In the year since they’ve moved in, Gabe has already talked down several people who had planned to commit suicide by jumping off.  Then one otherwise unremarkable evening, Gabe isn’t able to stop a woman from walking off the edge.  Although Pippa didn’t see the actual moment when the woman jumped, in the immediate aftermath, she could swear Gabe’s hands look like he might have pushed her.  But that’s impossible.  Her husband couldn’t harm anyone.

Then the news breaks that the woman who jumped is Amanda Cameron, the wife of Gabe’s former boss, but Gabe swore he didn’t recognize her.  With that one small deceit, the cracks in their perfect marriage start to show, and eventually grow larger until Pippa isn’t sure what is the truth and what she simply chose to believe about the man she swore to love until death do they part.

I had high hopes for this novel.  I kept coming back to the ARC and I saw a bunch of great reviews early on, so I was really stoked when NetGalley approved me for it.  The premise is awesome and there are so many subplots swirling through the story – kudos to the author for pulling them all together.  And I’ll admit, there were several small plot twists deftly tossed into the end of chapters.  More than once a shocked thought of, “Well, I didn’t see that coming,” crossed my mind.

“The Soulmate” interpreted by Wombo Dream

But overall, I felt like the plot was weak.  It relies too heavily on Pippa being unable to see what’s right in front of her.  There’s so much I can’t say without throwing out too many spoilers (hint: skip this if you don’t want any), but Gabe’s problem was fairly obvious to me, yet Pippa accepted a misdiagnosis without question, even though she’d read every book on it she could find (which seemed to be her go-to for pretty much every problem or challenge that confronts her.)  I honestly got frustrated with her.  If she weren’t the world’s most forgiving woman, they would have split up long before buying the cliff house and never would have experienced all of the problems that came along with it.  Of course, then there would be no book.

My last complaint is truly nitpicky, but it affected my enjoyment of the novel as a whole.  Apparently it’s incredibly easy to buy a house in Melbourne and the surrounding areas.  I think this couple purchased three, maybe four, houses in about five or six years.  The rest of her family found it easy to afford seafront property as well.  Apparently, you don’t even need a job to buy a house in this town.  Honestly, by the end of the book I was rolling my eyes and thinking I obviously live in the wrong housing market.

A lot of people raved over this book so obviously, my opinion is in the minority on this one.  While I had no problems finishing it and am certainly not about to write off this author, it lacked the punch I was hoping for.

3.25/5 stars ⭐⭐⭐+

Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing the ARC ebook.  I’ve left my review honestly and voluntarily.

Until next time, thank you for visiting.

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