Summer Book Review: A Question of Betrayal by Zoe Miller

Imagine This: Five years since your parents died and you are not in grief mode. Heck, even if you are you do not want to admit it. Their death has created a giant hole in your life, as well as your heart. You find yourself not committing to anything in your professional life, or your social life. You are just staying alive, not so much living.

The only one person you valued in your life has packed out and left. Mostly because you drove him out, and partly because you are not exactly the type to communicate your feelings or even revisit the night of your parents’ death.

Apparently, secrets buried deep are bound to surface. You find out your mum, who so much claimed to be in love with your father was cheating on him when she was a newly-wed. Now this man she had an affair with has something important to tell you. Of course, you do not want to meet him—what with your own fears and your inability to believe your mum did the unthinkable.

Except this man hasn’t anytime left. He’d be dying soon. If he dies, he dies with all his secrets. You tell yourself you wouldn’t see him. But then you man up and fly to Switzerland.

Of course, you have no idea what you are in for. One secret leads to another and another becoming a whole mess of complications you can never believe an easy-going person such as your mother would put away these ghosts in her pasts for such a long time.

But be careful, there’s someone out there who doesn’t want you to uncover these secrets. Because doing so would lead to their demise, and they’d rather have you silenced forever.

Carrie Cassidy’s complicated and messy life laden with secrets and dark pasts summarized for your delight.


First of all, Zoe Miller carves a complicated storyline that looks simple from reading the opening hundred pages (or so). A storyline I rolled my eyes at, I must admit, thinking this might be so predictable, you know what secrets would be revealed…. Blah blah. But then I forgot Zoe’s excellence, her very rare talent of making the reader carve out their own storyline and throwing the reader off course with shocking revelations that make her titles hard to predict anymore. All I am saying is, this book doesn’t seem as easy as it is on first glance. And the storyline you might be creating for it, would be so different from what you find out! A star!── ★

Secondly, there’s great character development. It was hard to fall in love with the main character at first, because I found her so dull. At times I’d closed the book and wonder what was off with Zoe’s lead character this time (as I very much loved the main characters of her previous title). But when our lead begins to face her fears, begins finding joy in little things, begins living and learning to confront all stages of grief, she leaps off the page and become lovable—one every person who’s gone through the loss of someone they loved (five years earlier!) can relate to! A star.── ★★

Other characters make this book great too. There’s Mark, the adorable guy our lead has hurt so much you could feel his anger simmering over the pages with any argument they have. There’s Sylvie, our lead’s mum who for most of the story we think she’s someone else till she surprises us and leaves us shocked. There’s Beth, the timid Beth whose inactions you would find yourself enraged by, but she inadvertently becomes the smartest and bravest character in the book. There’s Adam, the bad guy who’d do anything to make sure Carrie doesn’t discover past secrets. A star to these characters.
Zoe Miller offers a beautiful portrayal of Ireland in the eighties and Ireland now you cannot help but adore the past and present narratives of this book. Heck, for most part I adored the past when our lead wasn’t delivering in the opening pages.── ★★★

This book is laced with romance and some very good love-making that is so sensual (and not the tacky kind you’d find yourself skipping). The mystery would get you so confused you’d find yourself wondering why you ever tried predicting its outcome anyway. And the suspense… marvellous!── ★★★★

These are one of the many reasons I love Zoe Miller: she shows chick-lit/women’s fiction can embrace other genres without totally altering their chick-lit/women’s fiction sense. Beautiful.── ★★★★★

My rating: I am tempted to slash half of the stars I intended for the book because it really began at a slow pace. But upon further deliberations, I found out its pace was relevant and significant to our lead character’s development. Her growth wouldn’t have been significant, if the story wasn’t plotted that way. So five stars!

Zoe Miller’s amazing and different(—you always want that in a book!) story is up on amazing. Just go get it!

I recommend this book to anyone who loves their women’s fiction with a slice of dark. Anyone who wants something to keep them on their thinking feet trying to connect dots before the writer reaches her resolution should go get this! Anyone who loves Zoe Miller should go get this book as she doesn’t disappoint!

My work not done here. Off to post my review on Goodreads as well as amazon.

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