Thanks to NetGalley and Wednesday Books for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.
Release Date: February 2nd, 2020
Synopsis: “The Unity Project saved my life.”
Lo Denham is used to being on her own. After her parents died, Lo’s sister Bea, joined The Unity Project, leaving Lo in the care of their great aunt. Thanks to it’s extensive charity work and community outreach, The Unity Project has won the hearts and minds of most in the upstate New York region, but Lo knows there’s more to the group than meets the eye. She’s spent the last six years of her life trying—and failing—to prove it.
“The Unity Project murdered my son.”
When a man shows up at the magazine Lo works for claiming The Unity Project killed his son, Lo sees the perfect opportunity to expose the group and reunite with Bea once and for all. When her investigation puts her in the direct path of its charismatic and mysterious leader, Lev Warren, he proposes a deal: if she can prove the worst of her suspicions about The Unity Project, she may expose them. If she can’t, she must finally leave them alone.
But as Lo delves deeper into The Project, the lives of its members, and spends more time with Lev, it upends everything she thought she knew about her sister, herself, cults, and the world around her—to the point she can no longer tell what’s real or true. Lo never thought she could afford to believe in Lev Warren…but now she doesn’t know if she can afford not to.
Welcome to The Unity Project.
The next pulls-no-punches thriller from New York Times bestselling and Edgar award winning author Courtney Summers about an aspiring young journalist determined to save her sister from a cult.
I loved Courtney Summer’s Sadie, so I was quite excited when I saw The Project on NetGalley, especially with that gorgeous cover! I’ve read a few books centered around cults, but this is the first time I could see why one like this would attract so many people. I spent the majority of the book second guessing as to whether The Project really was dangerous, or was its charismatic leader, Lev Warren, sincerely trying to use the trauma of his abusive childhood to help others. The question of whether The Project is a cult is played out through alternating chapters between Lo and Bea. Both sisters are very strong characters, yet each have unique vulnerabilities which make them very relatable. I was kept guessing until the last few chapters, and even then there were a couple of surprising twists.
Overall, while I don’t think The Project was quite as good as Sadie, it was a thought-provoking read, and I was still musing over the characters and various aspects of it two days after I read it. For me, that makes it a resounding success.