No one looking at Morgan Kemper would think she had a secret-at least not one that she's deeply ashamed of. To everyone she meets, she comes across as sweet, pretty, and put together. But Morgan knows that looks can be deceiving. For over a year, she's shoplifted countless pieces of clothing and makeup. Each time she tells herself it will be the last, and each time it never is.
But when she's caught and sentenced to thirty hours of community service, the image Morgan has carefully constructed starts to crumble. She's determined to complete her punishment without her friends discovering the truth about her sticky fingers, but that's easier said than done...Especially once she meets Eli, the charming, handsome nephew of the owner of the charity shop where Morgan is volunteering. Soon, Morgan is faced with an impossible decision: continue to conceal the truth or admit that she's lied to everyone in her life, including the boy she's falling for.
I’ve decided that I love Rebecca Phillips’ writing and I’ve put her on my auto-buy author list. That’s right, it’s official. I loved the book she released last year, These Things I’ve Done, and as soon as I saw that The Girl You Thought I Was was available to review, I had to nab it. And it definitely didn’t disappoint.
Rebecca Phillips has a way of writing characters that makes you fall in love with them. Morgan is a shoplifter, and societal norms say you should hate her for that, but when her backstory is unravelled you can’t help but feel for her. Her parents’ divorce affected her massively, and despite the crimes she has committed, she is a good person who is trying to be better. I thought she was a fantastic protagonist.
I loved Morgan’s relationship with her father and her sister. Morgan lives alone with her father and her cat, and the father/daughter bonding was one of the best parts of the book.
The relationship between Morgan and Eli was also lovely. Their progression felt natural and really sweet. I didn’t like that the book fell into the Second Act Breakup trope, but whatever. I loved it anyway.
This book confirms what I thought after reading Phillips’ previous book, and that is that she writes fantastic relationships whether they’re platonic or romantic. This is where her skills truly shine.
I’m definitely going to have to go back and read the author’s backlog, because I feel like I’m going to love all of her books. And I can’t wait to see what she comes out with next!