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3.5 

The Perfect Child

By Lucinda Berry
The Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry digital book - Fable

Publisher Description

A page-turning debut of suspense about a young couple desperate to have a child of their own—and the unsettling consequences of getting what they always wanted.

Christopher and Hannah are a happily married surgeon and nurse with picture-perfect lives. All that’s missing is a child. When Janie, an abandoned six-year-old, turns up at their hospital, Christopher forms an instant connection with her, and he convinces Hannah they should take her home as their own.

But Janie is no ordinary child, and her damaged psyche proves to be more than her new parents were expecting. Janie is fiercely devoted to Christopher, but she acts out in increasingly disturbing ways, directing all her rage at Hannah. Unable to bond with Janie, Hannah is drowning under the pressure, and Christopher refuses to see Janie’s true nature.

Hannah knows that Janie is manipulating Christopher and isolating him from her, despite Hannah’s attempts to bring them all together. But as Janie’s behavior threatens to tear Christopher and Hannah apart, the truth behind Janie’s past may be enough to push them all over the edge.

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2368 Reviews

3.5
Thinking Face“Just finished listening to the Epilogue that was cut from the original manuscript in hopes that it would clarify some of the questions the book brought up. I can’t say I got any real answers. Perhaps my biggest stumbling block was understanding how a man intelligent enough to establish a successful career as an orthopedic surgeon could be so oblivious to the child’s extremely disturbing and manipulative behavior. This is one seriously mentally deranged little girl and the author relays a series of very messed up behaviors that propel the narrative, but at the end of it all—including the revived epilogue, no real explanation for her behavior is presented. We also never find out what becomes of the little brother. When kids are removed from parental custody for allegations of abuse, they remove ALL the children. What happens to the wife after everything goes down? There were just too many unanswered questions and occurrences that strained credibility for me to feel any sense of satisfaction with this book. Even with the addition of the epilogue, I am not feeling any sense of resolution. Really disappointed with the ending.”
Thumbs Up“What starts as a hopeful journey quickly turns into a nightmare as Janie’s traumatic past manifests in increasingly disturbing behavior. The book does an excellent job of portraying the emotional toll on the Bauer family as they struggle to provide Janie with a loving home while grappling with her violent tendencies. One of the most compelling spoilers is the revelation of Janie’s true nature and the extent of her manipulative and dangerous behavior. The gradual build-up to this realization is masterfully done, keeping readers on edge. Another shocking twist is the discovery of Janie’s connection to her biological parents, which adds a chilling layer to the story and deepens the sense of dread. Lucinda Berry’s background as a trauma psychologist shines through in her authentic and nuanced portrayal of psychological trauma and its impact on both the victim and those around them. “The Perfect Child” is a haunting and thought-provoking read that lingers long after the final page.”
Characters change and growMulti-layered charactersBeautifully writtenEasy to readAddictiveFast-pacedSuspensefulRealistic settingDarkHeartbreaking
Thinking Face“I just took in 2 foster to adopt kids and this had me thinking. (I love my kids). Janie definitely had some serious issues. Watching things fall through the cracks touched my heart in a lot of places. I did not like the ending. I have so many more questions that I want answered. What is going to happen to Janie? What are her behaviors like in residential placement? Will the Bower’s divorce? Or will they figure it out?”
Reviewed in:Spooky Book Club
Multi-layered charactersSuspensefulTwistyAbuseUnsatisfying ending
Expressionless Face
Reviewed in:Certified Yappers
Easy to readSuspensefulDarkPredictableUnsatisfying plot

About Lucinda Berry

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