The Fifth Letter

Nicola Moriarty. Morrow, $26.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-06-241356-7
Joni Camilleri, Deb Camden, Trina Chan, and Eden Chester are all Scorpios and have all been friends since high school in 1990s Australia. They’ve shared secrets and crushes, moves and heartaches. Now, in 2016, even though they’re in their 30s and married, and all (but one) are mothers, they still somewhat reluctantly get together for an annual girls’ getaway. This year Joni suggests they each write an anonymous letter telling the group a secret. As they read the letters, they learn that one of them is contemplating divorce, one hates being a parent, one confesses to having placed a baby for adoption, and one admits to lying to her friends. But as all the letters are shared, it turns out there are five, and whomever wrote the last letter hates one of the others. The meandering stories of these women are held together with the powerful question of who wrote the last letter, which reveals just how precarious childhood friendships are. The interspersed first-person confessions between Joni and her priest don’t add much, but the majority of the book, told in alternating chapters of current scenes and flashbacks to 1993, adeptly exposes the striking differences among the four friends and the five letters. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 12/12/2016
Release date: 01/01/2017
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-06-264396-4
Open Ebook - 288 pages - 978-0-06-241358-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-4708-5479-9
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-266093-0
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-0-06-241357-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-4708-5480-5
MP3 CD - 978-1-4708-5481-2
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