Hard Girls (click link for Amazon Page) by J. Robert Lennon is the first of a new series.

Jane Pool lives an uneventful life in the ‘burbs within an imperfect family of her husband Chance and their 12-year-old daughter Chloe, yet she has a dark past and hidden secrets.

One day out of the blue, she receives a cryptic coded email that sends her reeling. It is from her long lost twin sister Lila.

A strained clandestine phone call reveals that Lila’s intel has located their mother Annabelle, whose latest and thought to be permanent disappearance from their lives occurred decades earlier. Lila wants to recruit Jane to go with her to find the trurh behind their mother’s exodus and their not-so-normal upbringing.

An apprehensive Jane agrees. Much to the irritation of Chance, who prefers that the past remains burried, she disengages from work and her life and joins Lila on a tense road trip that crosses several states, ends up in South America and gets more danerous at every turn.
There is a lot of back and forth between Then and Now, and one location after another, as Lennon fleshes out backstories and the women’s current pursuit.

I much prefer the story of what influenced who they are now to the illegal dealings and violence.

Likewise, I would rather experience a plot as it unfolds, vs being told what happened, especially where the past is concerned.

Although it built to a weird twist and an exciting ending, I was not as engaged as I’d hoped to be. Hard Girls by J. Robert Lennon may be of more interest to someone who appreciates espionage-type thrillers.

Hard Girls
J. Robert Lennon
Mulholland Books 2024
308 pages

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