Cuban Heels by Emily Barr

It’s been a while since I read anything of Emily’s and I had forgotten how much I enjoyed her books. Emily is a travel writer by day and her stories always whisk you off somewhere exotic, this time you won’t be surprised to hear that the main action takes place in Cuba.

The tale is told from the perspective of two of the characters. First up we have Maggie, a 28 year old woman who moves to Brighton after she splits up from her boyfriend and desperate for friendship decides to follow her neighbours to Cuba! Maggie’s life is built on a series of little white lies that she has told her family – that she works for American Express and has made friends with her neighbours – when really she’s a lap dancer by night and the closest she has come to a conversation with said neighbours is listening to their lives through a baby monitor!

The other voice is Libby’s, the neighbour who used to be a successful lawyer but now spends her days looking after her baby Charlie and feeling like a fat and frumpy stay at home mum. She is appalled when her husband wants to spend six months living in Cuba so he can learn Spanish, but when she gives in and finds herself in Havanna she discovers a side of her that she thought had disappeared with the birth of her son.

As Maggie conspires to become a part of Libby’s world we learn that both girls have secrets in their lives, but in trying to bury her past Maggie finds herself on a dangerous path of self destruction that eventually puts Libby’s life in danger.

It’s a brilliant read, definitely one for the beach this summer.

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