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Title: Just One Look
Author: Lindsay Cameron
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: July 27, 2021
Genre: Psychological Thriller
My Rating: 4/5
Eyes aren’t the windows to the soul. Emails are.
Cassie Woodson is adrift. After suffering an epic tumble down the corporate ladder, Cassie finds the only way she can pay her bills is to take a thankless temp job reviewing correspondence for a large-scale fraud suit. The daily drudgery amplifies all that her life is lacking—love, friends, stability—and leaves her with too much time on her hands, which she spends fixating on the mistakes that brought her to this point.
While sorting through a relentless deluge of emails, something catches her eye: the tender (and totally private) exchanges between a partner at the firm, Forest Watts, and his enchanting wife, Annabelle. Cassie knows she shouldn’t read them. But it’s just one look. And once that door opens, she finds she can’t look away.
Every day, twenty floors below Forest’s corner office, Cassie dissects their emails from her dingy workstation. A few clicks of her mouse and she can see every adoring word they write to each other. By peeking into their apparently perfect life, Cassie finds renewed purpose and happiness, reveling in their penchant for vintage wines, morning juice presses, and lavish dinner parties thrown in their stately Westchester home. There are no secrets from her. Or so she thinks.
Her admiration quickly escalates into all-out mimicry, because she wants this life more than anything. Maybe if she plays make-believe long enough, it will become real for her. But when Cassie orchestrates a “chance” meeting with Forest in the real world and sees something that throws the state of his marriage into question, the fantasy she’s been carefully cultivating shatters. Suddenly, she doesn’t simply admire Annabelle—she wants to take her place. And she’s armed with the tools to make that happen.
Cassie is an attorney who suffered a public downfall at her previous job. She takes a job working as a temp at a large law firm. Her job is to read through emails for a fraud case. It’s a rather boring job, but she soon reads emails exchanged between Forrest and his wife Annabelle. Cassie becomes more and more interested in Forrest, going from reading private emails to wanting to see Forrest in person.
Cassie is an intriguing character, though she’s not very likable. As her story slowly unfolds, it also gets crazier. Just One Look isn’t the most believable story, but it is entertaining.
Just One Look is a complex thriller. A story with obsession and stalking, making it a good read for fans of You by Caroline Kepnes.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.