Format: E-Galley, 352 pages
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: Mystery, Suspense
A man who was supposed to be her salvation . . .
On the surface, Celine Gonzalez had everything a twenty-eight-year-old woman could want: a one-bedroom apartment on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, a job that (mostly) paid the bills, and an acceptance letter to the prestigious Hollingsworth Institute of Art, where she would finally live out her dream of becoming an antiques appraiser for a major auction house. All she had worked so hard to achieve was finally within her reach. So why would she kill herself?Maggie Sparkes arrives in New York City to pack up what’s left of her best friend’s belongings after a suicide that has left everyone stunned. The police have deemed the evidence conclusive: Celine got into bed, downed a lethal cocktail of pills and vodka, and never woke up. But when Maggie discovers a scandalous photograph in a lock box hidden in Celine’s apartment, she begins asking questions. Questions about the man Celine fell in love with. The man she never told anyone about, not even Maggie. The man Celine believed would change her life. U ntil he became her ruin.
On the hunt for evidence that will force the police to reopen the case, Maggie uncovers more than she bargained for about Celine’s private life—and inadvertently puts herself on the radar of a killer. A killer who will stop at nothing to keep his crimes undiscovered.
K.A. Tucker's He Will Be My Ruin is a standalone novel that will have readers flipping through pages quickly from the prologue right until the ending. Maggie Sparkes is the primary story teller, but Tucker does alternate perspectives so that Celine Gonzalez can tell her own story. Maggie and Celine have been best friends since they were young children living in California. While Maggie has never suffered for money, Celine worked hard to become something of an antiques aficionado. While Maggie went off to Africa and all points in-between with her philanthropic endeavors, Celine moved to New York City where she was accepted to the prestigious Hollingsworth Institute of Art.
After Celine's is found dead in her NYC apartment, and the police rule her death a suicide, Maggie flies in from Africa to pack up her things, and discovers that there was a whole side to Celine that she never knew about. As Maggie opens up deep, dark secrets about Celine, and what she's been up to and how she really felt about her, Maggie becomes determined to have the police re-open her case. In doing so, Maggie puts her own life on the line, and it will take a whole lot of courage and bravery to get out alive. Who is the man who Celine claims will not only be her salvation, but her ruin as well? The deeper Maggie goes, including hiring a Private Investigator to look into Celine's life, uncovering her personal diaries, and her rather large antique collection, the more things don't add up when it comes to the police ruling her death a suicide.
Readers will be eager to read Celine's story since it is part and partial to everything that happens before Maggie arrives in NYC. She is definitely a character I can relate to due to her mothers struggle with cancer. A struggle that forces Celine to do things that she most likely wouldn't have done otherwise to have enough money to take care of her. I really have a whole lot of emotions for Celine. Here is a girl who worked her butt off so that she could have a future in the antiques realm. Her own collection is to die for, literally. Definitely reminds me of those who watch the Antiques Roadshow in a sense. She also has some issues, but not enough to kill her over.
I really admired Maggie's determination. Sure, she's a rich princess who never once had to struggle for money. But, she's also a social justice champion who actually uses her money for good things like building homes, and schools, and brings fresh water, and electricity to villages that don't normally have access to this sort of funding. Maggie perhaps gets a bit caught in the drama, especially with several key secondary characters that you can shake your finger at and say, HEY, that so and so was at fault! I adored 80 year old Ruby Cummings who was Celine's next door neighbor and writer of mysteries, and crime novels. I need someone like Ruby in my life. Someone who genuinely cares, and lives life to the fullest.
Definitely recommended for those who enjoyed Tucker's Burying Water or Ten Tiny Breaths series. Just don't expect the story to be all about the romance. There are scenes of hot, steamy sex, but definitely no romance that you can say would last long after the story is over.