S.J. Watson made quite a splash with Before I Go to Sleep and this second novel Second Life is just as good at questioning the supposedly normal and happy life of the main character.
Julia seems all too eager to wade into the shoes of her sister’s secret life. At first it is odd and then the cautiousness changes into excitement. She starts seeking the danger and the thrill. Not sure why she is completely oblivious to the warning signs, and to be quite frank I think it stops being about her sister and more about Julia’s secret desires.
Obviously on the surface the relationship between her and Hugh seems perfect, but obviously that can’t be entirely true. They are both so disconnected from each other without even knowing it. Seeking comfort, love and thrills in the arms of other people.
I was surprised how willing Julia was to wade into something so risky. Not one doubt or thought to her safety, which I hope isn’t indicative of a future trend. Oh hey, wait a minute, it already is. The virtual world has created a fine little loophole for people, who prey on the vulnerable on the net.
Whether you are single or in a relationship and decide to go looking for a secret thrill, romance or the love of your life, you would do well to remember that not everyone on the web is who they say they are. Safety and caution are always paramount when it comes to interactions on the web. That particular message comes through nice and clear in this story thanks to Watson.
I think that happens to be a special brand of S J Watson, putting the fear of doubt and the inner worm of mistrust into the head of the reader.The ending seemed a wee bit ‘out there’ and perhaps a little rushed after the lengthy secret meetings and the relationship between Julia and her paramour.
I received a copy of this book courtesy of the publisher and NetGalley.