The Things We Wish Were True by Marybeth Mayhew Whalen

The Things We Wish Were True

In an idyllic small-town neighborhood, a near tragedy triggers a series of dark revelations. From the outside, Sycamore Glen, North Carolina, might look like the perfect all-American neighborhood. But behind the white picket fences lies a web of secrets that reach from house to house.Up and down the streets, neighbors quietly bear the weight of their own pasts—until an accident at the community pool upsets the delicate equilibrium. And when tra...

Details The Things We Wish Were True

TitleThe Things We Wish Were True
Release DateSep 1st, 2016
PublisherLake Union Publishing
Number of pages290 pages
GenreFiction, Mystery, Contemporary

Reviews The Things We Wish Were True

  • Chelsea Humphrey
    I believe I've found another trustworthy publisher in Lake Union; I particularly seem to gravitate toward their women's fiction releases since they tend to be a reliable pick for my interests. I have loved the past 5 reads from them and am excited to read the last few I have sitting on my shelf. These books aren't as romance focused as others; sure there are typically romantic relationships, but it's only a portion of the plot instead of the main...
  • Zoeytron
    A spider's intricately spun web blocks the entrance to the neighborhood swimming pool on opening day, a portent of some sticky situations in store for the residents of Sycamore Glen. There isn't a person in the group who doesn't have a secret. And yes, those secrets will all be laid bare before summer's end. I didn't really get the sense of a small town with this one. It had more of a cozy neighborhood feel about it. Best friends trying to reconn...
  • Larry Hoffer
    "And yet, Jencey understood, there were the things she wished were true, and there was what was actually true. She was learning that there was usually a great distance between the two.Sycamore Glen, North Carolina is one of those small towns. You know, the ones where everyone knows everyone's business, where people remain entangled in each other's lives from childhood on, where secrets are hidden just out of sight. Bryte grew up in Sycamore Glen,...
  • Diane S ☔
    3.5 Sycamore Glen, North Carolina, the small town Jancy left after high school, threatened by a stalker that none could identify. Now her husband in prison, she and her two young daughters have returned home to her mother, the boy she left behind now married to the woman who had been her best friend. Over the course of the summer, a summer spent at the local pool, a near tragedy will occur and long held secrets will be revealed.This book is incre...
  • Esil
    3+ stars. I really enjoyed The Things We Wish Were True for the first two thirds of the book, and then it started taking a couple of turns I didn’t like as much and my enthusiasm fizzled a bit. But I still enjoyed it enough to say it was worth reading as a lighter entertaining read. The novel is told from the perspective of a few neighbours living in a small town in North Carolina. Their lives are intertwined in various ways, and they all have ...
  • Kristina
    This book is hard to take seriously, especially with characters with names such as Zell, Jencey, Cailey, Bryte and Lance. It's difficult to get past the names--the whole time I was reading I was wondering--did no one at any point have the courage to tell the author just how ridiculous they are? Isn't that what editors, publishers, etc. are for? Silly names notwithstanding, I found this book to be mediocre but readable. The many "mysteries" and bi...
  • Lee
    Sycamore Glen in North Carolina is a very small town, everyone knows everyone and everyone else's business, or do they? Lurking behind these friendships, many are hiding secrets and lies while others are quite oblivious to what is happening around them. A near tragedy occurs, which in one sense will bring some closer together but for others, it may tear them apart. The story is told by four women Bryte, Jencey, Zell and Cailey all very different ...
  • Obsidian
    So this book in the end did not live up to the hype I kept seeing all over the place with it. With shifting perspectives (there were six people to track in this book) and the author choosing to make 5 out of 6 told in the third person there was way too much going on for me to even really care about all of these characters.In addition, due to the plethora of characters, the development of almost all of these characters was shallow. The only except...
  • ☮Karen
    And yet, Jencey understood, there were the things she wished were true, and there was what was actually true. She was learning that there was usually a great distance between the two.If you can get past the unusual names of the main characters, you might be able to enjoy this story: Bryte (is it pronounced like Bright or like Britt?), Cutter, Jencey, Pilar, Zara, and Zell, with a life jacket thrown in by way of Everett, Lance and Cailey. I've nev...
  • Catherine McKenzie
    Wow, this book packs a punch. The story unwinds through the alternating perspectives of a host of characters living in the same small town who are all connected through a web of secrets and lies. Deftly told. Highly recommend.
  • Terry ~ Huntress of Erudition
    I received this from the publisher and Netgalley for my honest review.This book was good, but not great. I wish I had started it at the beginning of the summer - It's the perfect book to read by the pool, it was a quick read and entertaining, but a few things bothered me:1. Only Cailey's chapters were written in the first person and Cailey's herself spoke more like a middle-aged woman than a 10 or 12 year old girl, it just didn't sound authentic....
  • Dena
    This was the first book I read by this author, and I really enjoyed it. To me it was reminiscent of books by Catherine Ryan Hyde, who I also really enjoy (Don't Let Me Go, specifically). The story takes place during the summer of 2014 and focuses on several families who visit the community pool every year and how their lives intersect. It is told from different points of view, which adds to the unique story line, and focuses on the hidden secrets...
  • Mary Ann
    I got this as a Kindle Prime freebie. It's not exactly soaring prose, and the plot is predictable, but I liked and cared about the characters.
  • Petra
    The Things We Wish Were True follows the events within a small community in North Carolina over the summer of 2014.Told from multiple perspectives, one in first-person the rest in third-person, the diverse characters include Lance, a father trying to cope with his two children after his wife left, Jencey, a mother forced to return to her childhood home after her husband has been imprisoned, Zell, an older and somewhat lonely woman who loves to he...
  • Angie
    The Things We Wish Were True is mesh of genres that focuses on a neighborhood, it's residents, and the past and present happenings there. There are 4 key families whose histories together may be different than they each think. The secrets all begin to unravel one sweltering summer. Will the neighbors' relationships survive when all that is hidden comes to light? Can they forgive if they can't forget? There is definitely more going on than meets t...
  • Melodie
    At first glance life in Sycamore Glen North Carolina is idyllic. A neighborhood where nothing much has changed except the age of the occupants. But nothing is as it seems. Just below the surface there are resentments,fears, old jealousies. A generational tale as well with kids turned grown-ups parenting their children who challenge them as they did their parents.The story is told in alternating perspectives by the principals of the story.Overall ...
  • Lorrea(WhatChaReadin'?)
    The Things We Wish Were True takes place in a small town in North Carolina during the summer of 2014. It's a very close knit community and most residents have lived there most of their lives. From Zell, the neighborhood matriarch to Jancey the "prodigal" daughter returning after making a quick escape after high school. Each character has their own story and each story intertwines with each character. It includes twists and turns that will make yo...
  • Rachel Nobel Fields
    This is a book that wishes it were written by Liane Moriarty. But it was not. Lots of intersecting plot lines that made me say "Wait, what?" and overused awkward phrases ("That she is" came up a LOT).
  • Judy Collins
    A special thank you to Lake Union and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. Marybeth Mayhew Whalen pulls you into an all American contemporary neighborhood, with dark secrets and lies, seems everyone is hiding something in her latest: THINGS WE WISH WERE TRUE –a Southern charmer looks beneath the pristine exteriors of this friendly North Carolina neighborhood. In this idyllic Matthews, NC suburban neighborhood Sycamore Glen, e...
  • Vanessa
    A quick read that still packs a punch, The Things We Wish Were True tells the story of neighbors in a small North Carolina town. It took me a little bit of time to know which character was which, but after that, I enjoyed the alternating perspectives. The book was a bit overly dramatic (think soap opera) at times, but it kept me interested. I am pleased with the ending, and my main complaint about the book is that most of the characters have unus...
  • Ms Stef
    There seems to be a trend in books about secrets among women and how it effects those around them. Or maybe I am just picking up increasingly more of this “style” of book.The Things We Wish Were True plays out like a day time soap opera or life time made for TV movie. Everyone has a secret big or small and by not telling anybody their secrets, they expand into something bigger. The chapters are short and slowly give away pieces of the puzzle ...
  • Kris - My Novelesque Life
    When I read the synopsis of The Things We Wish Were True I was intrigued by it's vagueness. Of course it was a "wish for it" request on NetGalley. I have had two "wishes" come true but I don't get too attached. Last night I had planned to read Tom Bale's All Fall Down for today's review but that was not to be. As I was finishing up on Goodreads I see I have received an new email at 11:45pm. I have just had my wish granted...and guess what? The bo...
  • Barbara
    3.5 Stars: “Things We Wish were True” is a relatable novel of humans making do: living everyday life, hoping for the best, believing in the best (even when it’s contrary to the obvious). Denial is a big theme as is loss. Although this sounds like a heartbreaking tale, it’s not. It’s a testament to the human spirit.Told in alternating POV’s, which is one of my favorite plot devices, the reader gets a multidimensional look at the story....
  • Michael S
    An interesting read about the lives of different families in a North Carolina neighborhood. From the surface all looks fine, carefree, and happy in the world of middle class suburbia where summer parties and pool outings abound...but on the journey through the book we learn of the trials, imperfections, and sordid pasts each of these characters have had, or are going through.Overall I was happy with the read and I enjoyed the unexpected turn of e...
  • Matthew Pendana
    This is the first novel I have read in a long time. As a returning reader, I found myself slightly unengaged in the story for the first 49-50% of the novel, but then became engrossed in the rapidly progressing snowball of a plot in the second half. The lengthy story set-up tested my patience(as a "new" reader), but it was well worth it. There were times where this story felt like Desperate Housewives, but the story turned into much more then that...
  • Barbara White
    The Things We Wish Were True is a page-turner that blends dark, twisted secrets with a redemptive story about the power of community. As the families of Sycamore Glen, North Carolina kick off summer at their neighborhood pool, Marybeth Mayhew Whalen peels back the layers of their past and present lives to reveal the underbelly of suburbia. I loved every voice and every page, and the ending was fabulous.
  • Carrie Schmidt (Reading is My SuperPower)
    The Things We Wish Were True is a peek behind the picket fences, behind the polite smiles, beyond the potlucks. Told from the perspectives of various characters, the story and the secrets are revealed a layer at a time. Both of these techniques – the alternating voices (one in first person, the rest in third) and the slow reveal – add to the intrigue and give the book a bit of a psychological thriller feel. A little romance, a little suspense...
  • Cristine
    I started reading this thinking it was going to be a breezy light-hearted book which is what I was looking for as the last book I read was rather heavy. However, it turned out to be extremely intense, thought provoking, disturbing, inspiring and heartwarming. I was already feeling emotional toward the end as the 'mysteries' were being revealed ( a few I had guessed, others truly surprised me) but then when I read the author's note about the parts...
  • Aura
    I am torn between 3 and 4 stars for this book. I really liked it once I finished it but I was very lost in the beginning. The story is told in multiple pov by a lot of different characters. For the first half of the book, I kept mixing up characters. It may have been my fault because I did have a hurricane passing me by. Anyhow, the second half of the book really came together for me and I really liked it. Everett, Bryte and Jensen's story were t...
  • Mrs Mommy Booknerd
    This book was one that I blew through. I was taken inside a quiet town and into the lives of the characters. Characters that had their own personal struggles and secrets that mixed with dynamics of neighborhood life. There were many twists and turns. I could not help but be pulled into the compelling drama and wonder how it all fit together and how it would all resolve. It is a fascinating story and one that would make a fantastic book club pick.