Despite the title, there was nothing pretty about Pretty Girls. In fact, this was one of the most uncomfortable books I have ever read. By the time I figured out the premise, I was too far in to stop reading. There were gruesome acts of torture and mayhem against young women, and truth be told, I skimmed those sections because it was too horrifying to read.
The novel started when Claire’s husband, Paul, was murdered followed by a break-in and the discovery of snuff porn in their home. Suddenly, Claire’s lavish and pristine life was upended by fraud, money laundering, and rape, all of which forced her to reunite with her estranged sister Pepper. I liked reading about the sisters mending their relationship as the attempted to uncover who Paul really was. The events also forced them to revisit the disappearance of their older sister, Julia, a story line that was told by the narration of the girls’ father as a journal diary. His words were so heart wrenching, and his dedication to find his daughter was admirable that his portion of the novel was one of my favorites and was what kept me reading this.
Both narratives merged together in a shocking and totally twisted way. And I mean twisted.