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February 14, 2020

First Came Us by Rachel Cullen ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

Ellie:  'Just moments ago, I  applauded myself for how efficiently I made my way through Trader Joe's...but now I am wandering the aisles of CVS and I can't even remember why I came in here."
Jack:  "I want everyone to pretend like I'm not here so I can get to the gym, come home, shower, grab breakfast and get in the car to get to campus by eight-thirty.  Then I would have time to go through email before office hours and have the rest of the morning and early afternoon to work on my book before class at two." (p47)

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

November 2019;  978-1697166750
ebook, print (327 pages); women's fiction
First Came Us is the story about a family who appears to have it all and are living the good life. Their core is going to be deeply tested when the secrets they are keeping from each other begin to come out.  It's a good look at a family that is falling apart and whether they will be able to keep their family intact.

Jack and Ellie are married and have three kids - a 16-year-old daughter and two younger.  Ellie owns a yoga studio and Jack is a professor at Yale.  They both live busy lives between their jobs and child issues and even if they aren't totally happy with their lives, they are satisfied.  At least until secrets emerge - Jack gets a visit from someone in his past, Ellie finds out about a life-changing event and their daughter Sydney, always a good girl, starts seeing someone much older than she is.  Her parents are so wrapped up in their secrets that they miss the clues of what's going on in Sydney's life.  Will they be able to save their marriage and help their daughter to get back on the right path or will their secrets overwhelm the love that they have for each other and ruin their family life?

First Came Us is told from three points of view - Ellie's, Jack's and Sydney's.  I thought that Sydney's POV was the most interesting and true to life as she changed from a girl with great grades and a potential for a great college to someone who was sneaking around and seeing someone inappropriate for her.  Ellie and Jack were also interesting as they worked hard to keep their secrets from each other.  There were a lot of issues going on at the same time and it's surprising that this family didn't give up on each other once the secrets were revealed.  Overall, it's an interesting look at how a happy family deals with a major crisis in their mundane happy life.  Despite all of the issues that the parents have to deal with plus the changes in their daughter, this was a light, fun read.  It's my first book by this author and I plan to read her books in the future.

Buy First Came Us at Amazon

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina when she isn't traveling. She and her husband enjoy traveling, gardening and spending time with their family and friends. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and thrillers. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on FacebookGoodreads, or Twitter.

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