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He Will Be My Ruin

He Will Be My Ruin

Written by K.A. Tucker

Narrated by Kate Rudd and Olivia Song


He Will Be My Ruin

Written by K.A. Tucker

Narrated by Kate Rudd and Olivia Song

ratings:
4/5 (110 ratings)
Length:
11 hours
Released:
Feb 2, 2016
ISBN:
9781442388871
Format:
Audiobook

Description

The USA TODAY bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths and Burying Water series makes her romantic thriller debut with this heartpounding story of a young woman determined to find justice after her best friend's death, a story pulsing with the "intense, hot, emotional" (Colleen Hoover) writing that exhilarates her legions of fans.

Twenty-eight-year-old 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 bottle of Xanax and a handle of Maker's Mark, and never woke up. But when Maggie discovers secrets in the childhood 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 who Celine herself claimed would be her ruin.

On the hunt for answers 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 who will stop at nothing to keep his crimes undiscovered.
Released:
Feb 2, 2016
ISBN:
9781442388871
Format:
Audiobook


About the author

K.A. Tucker writes captivating stories with an edge. She is the bestselling author of the Ten Tiny Breaths and Burying Water series and the novels He Will Be My Ruin, Until It Fades, Keep Her Safe, and The Simple Wild. She currently resides in a quaint town outside Toronto with her husband and two beautiful girls.


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What people think about He Will Be My Ruin

4.0
110 ratings / 20 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (4/5)
    A young lady (Celine) apparently commits suicide in New York City and her best friend (Maggie) comes to town to deal with her belongings. What first surprises her is that she has amassed a very nice art collection. So initially there are the dual mysteries of did she really commit suicide and how did she get the money for all the art? This, of course, leads Maggie down an unsavory path including a Jane Austin style romance between her and a good boy and a bad boy. The novel has some predictable twists and some I didn't see coming. Nice but no overwhelming.
  • (3/5)
    Maggie Sparkes arrives in New York City to pack up her best friend's belongings. Celine Gonzales has committed suicide which has left everyone stunned. Celine was a beautiful young woman who had an acceptance letter to the prestigious Hollingsworth Institute of Art. She worked so hard to achieve her dreams and they were finally becoming a reality. It doesn't make sense that she'd kill herself. But the police have conclusive evidence - too many pills combined with too much alcohol. The more Maggie goes through Celine's belongings the more she is convinced it wasn't suicide. On her search for evidence that will make the police reopen the case, Maggie puts herself in the killer's path - a killer who has no problem getting her out of the way too.

    It started off good, but after I put it down I struggled to get back into it. It became boring and long. I felt detached from the characters. It was nothing special.
  • (5/5)
    4.5 "Who Done It?" Stars! What a twisted journey! I absolutely loved KA Tucker's mystery/thriller debut! Using her talent for suspense which Ms. Tucker has expertly weaved into a number of her romance titles, Ms. Tucker takes it one step further and takes us on a wild, spine-tingling adventure hunt for a killer. But be forewarned romance enthusiasts, this is not a romantic suspense title, so only choose to undertake reading this novel if you have an open-mind to experiencing a story that lacks some of the typical romance conventions. However, for those romance readers that do, as well as the conventional mystery/thriller lovers, He Will Be My Ruin is one fascinating and complex story that is sure to keep you guessing until the last minute!Due to the suspense nature of this read, I suggest that you read as little as possible about the actual specifics of this story before enjoying it yourself. In that regard, I will keep the background portion of my review short, and as close as possible to the limited basics that you can identify from the blurb, to avoid spoiling any of the magic of this story for you!Maggie Sparkes grew up with Celine Gonzalez, the daughter of her former nanny. Since they were roughly the same age, and did nearly everything together, they soon became best of friends. However, over the years, they had grown apart somewhat as Maggie was off in Ethiopia on a charitable venture, while Celine was in New York working and fine-tuning her antique appraising skills. In fact, Celine had recently been accepted to her dream school, the prestigious Hollingsworth Institute of Art, where another good friend of Celine's worked. So all of Celine's goals where finally coming to fruition.So when Maggie receives the dreaded phone call that Celine has taken her own life, she is completely perplexed. It just doesn't add up. Why would Celine do this? Convinced that the police investigation must have gotten the facts wrong, Celine travels to New York and begins to unravel a multitude of hidden clues. Many of the clues revolve around a mysterious man, a person who Celine refers to as having been her salvation until he became her ruin, and a plethora of facts about her private life that Celine withheld from Maggie and her family.Will Maggie be able to uncover the full truth? Even if she does, how can she convince the police that her suspicions are right when the already seem to have moved on? Moreover, with a killer still on the loose, will Maggie be able to do both these things before she becomes the next victim? Be prepared to have your sleuthing skills tested! This is not a mystery I was able to solve easily. Moreover, even when I thought I had it all figured out, this story managed to take a number of extra twists and turns leaving me even more impressed with Ms. Tucker's imaginative writing skills!I can't wait to read more of Ms. Tucker's writing. Whether it be in the romance or thriller genre, anything she writes is sure to go right to the top of my must-reads!Source: Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review.
  • (5/5)
    I never would have guessed the ending! Didnt stop until I finished it. Superb!!!
  • (5/5)
    Great book. If you enjoy a mystery read this book!
  • (3/5)
    Not romantic suspense, definitely mystery/suspense. Well written but depressing.

    3.5 Stars
  • (5/5)
    Great and interesting read it was very sad how the lady died and sure loved that the killer was caught by the private PR agency! Great to learn more about all the evil that one person can being into others' lives. The only reason because they think they can get away with it.
  • (5/5)
    I've been listening to a lot of Amish books and I really wanted to just listen to another crime drama to get myself back in the mood. Really glad I picked this one. I kept assuming it was somebody else expecting the unexpected and I was wrong.
  • (4/5)
    Great story, good voice actor. Kinda iffy when she read the Asian woman's role and the black child's role, but other than that it was ok.
  • (4/5)
    First time reading K.A. Tucker. I enjoyed this book and am looking forward to reading this author’s backlist, and future books.
  • (5/5)
    I was on the edge of my seat the entire time! Such a GREAT read! Really kept my attention!
  • (4/5)
    Maggie's life has always been a privileged breeze, being the sole heiress to Sparkes Energy and all. Money has never been a roadblock for her because she's always had it. Her best friend from childhood on the other hand, Celine, led a different life. A life so veiled and desperate that Maggie knew nothing about until discovering her old diaries in the wake of her purported suicide.Upon hearing the news, Maggie uproots herself from her charity work—a self-professed duty only to combat the immorality of her family's money-grubbing energy empire—and moves into Celine's Manhattan apartment to help pack up her belongings. An antiques fanatic at heart and appraiser by trade, Celine left behind pieces that must amass to a fortune, and it's Maggie's responsibility to take care of it all. It isn't until she discovers tidbits of Celine's private life and the things she did to survive in the nasty slew of the city, that Maggie's suspicions that Celine's death was not a suicide are confirmed. Celine had so much going for her, so much to look forward to, both in her professional and personal life. Immediately, Maggie points her finger in the direction of murder, and sets off to find out everything she can about Celine's secret lover—the man she claims was her ruin.He Will Be My Ruin spins the tragedy of an unexpected death into a murder mystery that unfolds with a furor. Maggie is determined to go to any length to find out the truth about her best friend, unknowingly stepping straight into the high-risk, greed-fueled minefield that got Celine killed in the first place. K.A. Tucker knows how to tell a suspenseful story; the plot moves quickly with surprising discoveries and dark revelations peppered throughout, as Maggie enters this unfamiliar, dangerous game.I had no trouble getting through this book, and was definitely satisfied with its unpredictable outcome and frequent red herrings. So many complicated facets of Maggie's and Celine's lives are introduced to the backdrop of the crime, so while reading, there is no knowing of what matters in the case, and what has no relevance at all. A sizzling romantic distraction muddles Maggie's focus and creates a conflict of interest, while the emotional disaster she experiences when finding out about Celine's secret life almost destroys her.That said, I wasn't particularly affected by most of the layers of the story. The emotional tragedy, I understood, and the unraveling of Celine's murderer, I found chilling, but after I finished the book I felt like not much stuck with me. The characters are rather simple and formulaic (with the exception of the late Celine, who always finds a way to surprise the reader), and Tucker's writing style rather gratuitous with lots of superficial details. Regardless, it's an enjoyable story overall that will have you squirming in the moment as Maggie narrows down the harrowing possibilities in her crime-solving spree.In the end, she is forced to confront the scariest reality of them all: that the one person she trusted could be the person she should most fear, and that when it comes to murder, money, and sex, nothing is really what it seems to be on the surface.Pros: Detailed and thorough in narration // Characters are deeply explored // Suspenseful, fast-paced // Lots of factors introduced that make the mystery unpredictable and complicated // Simple and easy to navigate structurallyCons: Writing style, while effective, is slightly amateurish // I felt like I understood the characters well, but didn't really like any of themVerdict: He Will Be My Ruin combines a blazing tumble of a romance with an emotionally charged murder mystery. Brimming with shocking discoveries and an ominous "sleeping with the enemy" vibe, K.A. Tucker's newest novel grapples with themes of morals and guilt, despair and desperation, and the fine hazards of money and art. While I didn't find this book to be mind-blowing, I guarantee it will keep you glued to its pages until Maggie's mission is complete... if it even ends well, that is.8 hearts: An engaging read that will be worth your while; highly recommended.Source: Complimentary copy provided by tour publicist via publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased review (thank you, TLC Book Tours and Atria Books!).
  • (4/5)
    “Celine killed herself.” That’s what Rosa Gonzalez, Celine’s mother, had been led to believe. That’s what she lamented to Maggie Sparks who had been serving in a village in Ethiopia. But, Maggie knew Celine like a sister. She wouldn’t kill herself, would she? Maggie returned to New York to Celine’s apartment to clear out her belongings. She finds out that just maybe she didn’t know Celine as well as she thought she did. The first surprise was a closet full of designer clothing. How could Celine afford all this? The second surprise was a wad of money – hundreds and fifties. The third surprise was a photo of a naked man posed seductively. On the back, Celine had written “This man was once my salvation. Now he will be my ruin.”Even though they knew each other like sisters, their backgrounds had not been similar. Rosa was the Sparks family’s housekeeper. While the Sparks were rich, Rosa struggled financially. Financial help had been offered, but Rosa had been too proud to accept; Celine grew up with those values. More than once Maggie had offered to pay for her college. Celine wanted to make her own way. That brings me to the fourth surprise. The diaries Celine had kept for years … but the last one covering the last three months was missing. Suspecting Celine’s death wasn’t suicide, Maggie begins to follow up on any lead the diaries may suggest.With very masterful and suspenseful twists, you won’t know which way to turn and who to suspect. The prologue does exactly what it’s supposed to – it demands your attention and makes you curious to know more. The plot and pacing were perfect keeping certain details hidden until just the right moment. On the side, this is not really romance, per se, but more of a falling into bed instead of falling in love. Parts of the story were from Celine’s viewpoint taken from her diaries. However, therein lay a logistical problem which was too late in the book for me to identify the issue. Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
  • (4/5)
    He Will Be My Ruin by K.A. Tucker is a 2016 Atria Books publication. He Will Be My Ruin is a dark and shadowy psychological novel of suspense, told in a unique and original style that kept me turning pages, way past my bed time. Maggie and Celine were best friends growing up, but were polar opposites. Maggie came from vast wealth, while Celine’s mother did domestic work for Maggie’s parents. The girls remained close well into adulthood, where their paths separated. But, now Maggie is back in New York to box up Celine’s belongings after her untimely death, which has been ruled a suicide. In the process, Maggie discovers Celine led a double life, harbored intense resentments, and Celine was often a ball of contradictions. But, when she finds a photo of a man hidden in secret place, with an odd passage written across it, Maggie begins to wonder if Celine committed suicide or if something far more sinister happened to her. I love it when authors drop the traditional formula most often used in novels, because the story becomes more of a challenge, forcing me to slow down and absorb those tiny details I may have glossed over otherwise. This story is very atmospheric, with an understated quality that drew me in and held my attention from start to finish. Every character is complex, shrouded in a fog -like cloak making it impossible to penetrate the barriers surrounding them. The story almost has a noir feel to it at times, keeping the suspense level rising, deepening the mystery, leading me down dark passageways and tunnels, not sure which way to turn. The story is intense, but the atmosphere keeps the pace from spiraling out of control, despite those ominous warning bells you hear ringing. I think the effort here is interesting, and certainly left me impressed with the style, the writing, and the way the threads were woven together. Overall, this is a novel fans of psychological thrillers should try. I don’t think you will be disappointed.4 stars
  • (4/5)
    Maggie is rocked upon learning about the supposed suicide of her best friend Celine. As she works on Celine’s estate, she stays in the deceased woman’s apart and learns about some secrets Celine would not have wanted to come out. Nevertheless, Maggie knows Celine would not kill herself and proceeds to investigate the situation further, placing herself at risk. Great book, had some difficulty putting it down at night.
  • (4/5)
    Celine, a beautiful woman trying to carve out a life in New York, is dead. Her childhood friend Maggie Sparkes flies in from Kenya to pack up her apartment and mourn. As Maggie digs into Celine’s recent past, she finds things that make her believe that Celine didn’t commit suicide. However she will need more than a gut feeling and a risque picture of a man to convince the police to reopen the case.The description calls this a ‘romantic thriller’ and this is definitely more thriller and amateur detective story than a romance, much to my delight. This book flew by, keeping me interested and guessing who the culprit was. Indeed, there was even a doubt in my mind as to whether Celine herself made the final choice. The plot is well laid out and the characters fully engaging.Maggie is heir to a fortune but despises how her family makes their money (which involves turning a blind eye to the environmental pollution their various businesses create). So she has devoted her life and money to various charity efforts. Celine was the daughter of Rosa, the Sparkes’ housemaid when Maggie was growing up. The girls became fast friends and stayed in touch as adults. Now with Rosa seriously ill, aging, and living in California, Maggie is the next logical choice to pack up Celine’s apartment and see to her affairs.Celine was a budding antiques expert and her apartment is filled with her finds from over the years. She was building her collection as an investment for her future and working full time as a secretary. The plot thickens when Maggie finds several of Celine’s diaries and then her hand-written inventory of items. What these things reveal to Maggie, along with the photo of the mysterious man hidden in a lock box, solidifies Maggie’s believe that Celine did not commit suicide.When it comes to possible suspects and their motives, we have several to choose from and this kept me guessing right up to the last hour of the book. There’s the nosy neighbor whose always baking cookies or serving up tea, the mystery man from the photo (who comes from a political family), Hans the antique appraiser (and Celine’s best friend), and Gradey (the building superintendent). With each character, there were good and bad sides, and most had something they wanted to keep private. These secondary characters were well-rounded, keeping my attention held fast as I learned more about each one.There is a touch of romance, but it’s mostly there to move the plot forward. There was one really awkward, not at all planned steamy scene that came off a little ridiculous. It was the only such scene and it was quick, so it didn’t detract from the story. Celine is at the center of most of the romance, she herself being in love with a particular person even as another has a deep attachment to her.I hope the author writes more stories along these same lines. I really enjoyed the suspense!I received a copy at no cost from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.The Narration: Kate Rudd and Olivia Song each did great jobs on this book. I don’t know who took on the voice of Maggie and who took on the voice of Celine, however, both were done very well. Whoever performed Celine gave her a light Hispanic accent that was well done. Also, the narrator handled Celine’s emotions with just the right amount of drama or sadness or desperation as the scenes required. The narrator for Maggie was also great bringing Maggie to life as a no-nonsense and determined woman.
  • (3/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I am huge fan of K.A. Tucker, but I have been holding off on grabbing for this one since it was a mystery/suspense. I am not normally a huge fan of thrillers. This was good, but just did not do it for me like her other work. It was not bad by any means, just not something I loved. I did not love the characters. I never connected with Maggie or Celine. I also did not love the romances involved or where they went within the story. The ending was underwhelming and some of the twists and turns were pretty predictable.Overall, this was just good.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)
    Review courtesy of Dark Faerie TalesQuick & Dirty: Non-stop page turning mystery, with a shocking twisted ending.Opening Sentence: My wrists burn.The Review:Be prepared to not want to put this one down. He Will Be My Ruin is a page turner. I didn’t want to stop reading until the mystery was solved. Maggie digs herself into a killer mystery and opens doors that she probably shouldn’t have opened. When her best friend commits suicide, Maggie knows there has to be more to the story. Her friend would never have killed herself, she had to have been killed. This is not a romantic novel but there is sex. Maggie is hurting and the pleasure takes her mind of the pain that she is feeling. This story has so many twists and turns that it kept me guessing the entire time. I loved that I managed to stay surprised until the end reveal.Maggie and Celine couldn’t be more different, yet they are the best of friends. Unfortunately as they grow older, their lives grow further and further apart. Celine in New York City becoming an antiques appraiser while Maggie travels all over the world with her non-profit organization. Maggie thought her best friend wasn’t holding any secrets from her but Celine was holding back several huge secrets.The novel starts off with Maggie already kidnapped and in trouble but then cuts back to how she got into that situation and the subsequent countdown to that date really helped keep me glued to the story. I don’t want to reveal too much about the story so I’ll just try to lay down the basics. After Celine’s funeral Maggie travels to New York City to take care of Celine’s property and to also investigate her death. Maggie finds Celine’s journals detailing all her painful and heart wrenching secrets but Maggie can’t find the one journal that details the last four months of Celine’s life.Maggie spares no money and hires a private investigator. She hopes that Doug can help her uncover the clues and dig into places where she can’t. In the meantime, Maggie continues digging into the clues left behind by Celine, even approaching people that Celine knew and accosting the ones that she believes are responsible for her friend’s death. Maggie makes friends with Ruby, the eighty year old woman who lives across from Celine. Ruby is quite the eavesdropper. Maggie also meets Hans, Celine’s antique appraiser friend, who really helps Maggie with working through her friend’s collection.I can’t leave out the two incredibly hot guys that Maggie meets while in New York City. There is Grady, Celine’s apartment handy man. This British man and Maggie quickly strike up a sexual relationship. Then there is Jace, the incredibly sexy financial analyst whose naked picture that Maggie finds in Celine’s things. Both these men are way too hot for the page but I really loved how Maggie and Celine see both of these men differently.Money is a huge deal in this novel. Maggie has run away from it, becoming a philanthropist instead of going into her family business. Celine wants to pave her own way. She wants a job that will net her money while also finding the right ambitious man to marry. When Maggie starts on her mission she has no problem throwing the money away that she so carefully wanted to get away from. Maggie is a bit stuck up but she is incredibly thoughtful towards others, especially Ruby.He Will Be My Ruin wasn’t exactly what I expected. As long as you don’t go into it expecting a romantic love story, you will be fine. That was honestly the only thing that threw me off of the story but it was an extremely engaging read. If you love mysteries, I highly recommend it.Notable Scene:“Hey . . .” Jace’s hand lands on my knee. “I don’t lose my clients’ money. I thought you trusted me.”I want to slap his hand away. And in that time that I consider it, Grady appears in my doorway. It takes all of two seconds for his eyes to zero in on Jace’s hand.“Hi, Grady.” I stand quickly, moving a few steps toward him. “What’s up?”He smiles—a tight smile—and holds up a drill. “Ruby just called me down, about a kitchen cabinet hinge needing fixing?”“Oh, that’s right. I did.” Ruby’s eyes twinkle. “But why don’t you come in for some tea first?” She produces a fifth cup from somewhere, as if she anticipated this. I’m sure that’s why she also left Celine’s apartment door open.Grady’s work boots, unlaced, clomp against the floor as he saunters in, the late-day scruff along his jawline reminding me of the other night. In his dark faded jeans and Black Sabbath T-shirt, he’s about as polar-opposite to Jace as a guy could get.And I’m becoming that much more attracted to him because of it.I feel myself blush and duck my head as Ruby introduces Grady to everyone—because I clearly have no manners anymore.When I dare look up again, Jace is sizing up Grady, and Grady is glaring daggers at Jace, and neither Ruby nor I miss the exchange. The only one who seems oblivious is Hans, too busy stuck in a hot-guy haze to stop smiling. “So what local project were you talking about, Maggie?”I turn to level Jace with a gaze. “Helping steer women away from prostitution.”Jace coughs against his mouthful of tea. “Is that something your friend was passionate about?”“I was definitely something on her mind.”FTC Advisory: Atria/Simon & Schuster provided me with a copy of He Will Be My Ruin. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
  • (3/5)
    Maggie arrives in New York to deal with the aftermath of her childhood friend’s death. She and Celine grew up together, Maggie being the child of very wealthy parents, Celine being the child of the housekeeper/nanny. Maggie used her wealth to create a foundation and spent her days working abroad in countries where the need is greatest while Celine moved to New York City to pursue her dreams of becoming an antiques appraiser. However, there were secrets she kept, and Maggie is convinced that these secrets led to her death. While there are some interesting twists in this tale, I had no trouble putting it down and coming back to it later.
  • (2/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    So boring. I called every single plot twist that happened. It's like the author watched every murder movie on Lifetime ever and put them in one book.

    1 person found this helpful