Summary (from the publisher):
Twenty-four years old and newly employed in Manhattan, Jenna McCann agrees to place herself under the dead body of a wealthy, prominent New Yorker―her boss―to hide the identity of his real lover. But why?
Because she is half in love with him herself; because her only friend at Hull Industries asked her to; because she feared everyone around her; because she had no idea how this would spin out into her own, undeveloped life; because she had nothing and no one?
Or just because?
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
The first line of the synopsis for A.R. Taylor’s Jenna Takes The Fall instantly caught my attention. The novel begins with twenty-four year old, NYC newbie Jenna falsely owning up as her billionaire boss’ mistress when he suddenly dies to hide the identity of his true lover.
Jenna Takes The Fall was really different from most books that I normally read. It was this interesting cross between thriller and contemporary fiction, especially because the book begins with Jenna’s role in her boss’ death. The book is split between her life working at a newspaper conglomerate as an executive assistant of sorts to her new life after being bought out by the company’s law team. The reader definitely needs to suspend their sense of disbelief that Jenna is so willing to cover up the identity of a fellow co-worker in what would’ve been a huge cheating scandal without knowing really why she must do so.
Jenna is a really naive protagonist, especially in the first half. The references to her grandmother and Irish heritage felt a little forced and odd at times, but I think it was to get at this idea that Jenna was sort’ve this innocent young woman… who ended up falling in love and having an affair with her boss. The few scenes between Jenna and her boss, Vincent Hull, were a little graphic at times, but honestly, it was nothing that you haven’t seen in a romance novel. To be honest, I didn’t really see the chemistry between Jenna and Vincent. Yes, while scandalous and intriguing to read, I kept rooting for her to go to the good guy, Inti, and get away from Vincent. The glamour and extravagance of upper society in NYC was fun to read. One of the main conflicts or ideas revolves around how Jenna is to handle herself in this world with seemingly little to no consequences and who to ultimately trust. It’s honestly one of those reads that can get readers really infuriated with the world, as Jenna is basically used in a scandal to protect high-power people because she doesn’t have a big reputation of her own.
It took me some time to get used to Jenna’s personality, and I enjoyed her more as the main protagonist in the latter half of the book. I really don’t want to be spoilerly, but her journey in the half was super interesting because of its new settings. I do admit that the whole art mystery completely flew over my head, having been more concerned with Jenna’s fear of getting caught and trying to start a new life. The book could’ve been more powerful if we saw Jenna trying to grab control of her narrative early on. The book also took place during the late 1990s/early 2000s – I don’t know if this was decided to create a world where maybe those involved didn’t have to worry about social media or cameras getting in the way?
Overall, Jenna Takes The Fall was an enjoyable read for me. Its ending left me thinking a lot, and there were a few plot revelations I did not see coming. It wasn’t the perfect read for me, but it kept me throughly entertained during a pool day or two back in June. I could see this one becoming an indie hit this fall.
Jenna Takes The Fall by A.R. Taylor was just released on September 1, 2020.
This review is based on an advance reader copy provided by the publisher. By no means did this affect my thoughts & opinions.
Is Jenna Takes The Fall on your TBR? What books are you looking forward to in September? Share in the comments!