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The Last Mrs. Parrish
(Review, Book Summary & Spoilers)

By Liv Constantine

Book review, full book summary and synopsis for The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine, a slow burn thriller about a woman who is set on seducing a wealthy man.


In The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine, Amber Patterson is a running away from her past and has her eyes set on getting close to the glamorous Daphne Parrish, with the hopes of getting close to her husband, Jackson Parrish.

She sets her plan in motion and sets to get to know Daphne and her family. But just when things seem to be going smoothly, Amber's past might be coming to catch up with her...

(The Full Plot Summary is also available, below)

Full Plot Summary

Chapter-by-Chapter Summary
See the Chapter-by-Chapter Summary of The Last Mrs. Parrish
Quick Plot Summary

In Part I, Amber is a woman with humble beginnings who has her eyes set on seducing Jackson Parrish, who owns a Fortune 500 company. She's researched and studied him thoroughly for two years. When the book opens, Amber befriends his wife Daphne by pretending to also have a sister who died from cystic fibrosis and offering to volunteer for the CF foundation that Daphne runs.

Amber and Daphne's friendship grows over time, with Amber meeting Daphne's kids and becoming the co-chair for a big silent auction that the foundation, Julie's Smile, is holding. However, while Daphne is trusting and easy to get close to, Jackson remains another matter. He is enamored with his wife and continues to show no interest in Amber. Amber also works on winning over their two daughters.

Soon, Amber lies to Daphne about her boss making unwanted sexual advances and her getting fired because of it, and Daphne gets Amber a job at Jackson's company as his second assistant. Amber then sets on convincing his first assistant, an older woman named Mrs. Battley, to retire by spiking her coffee to make her think she is becoming mentally slower and disoriented. After three months, the woman resigns.

Amber eventually gets promoted to first assistant, and she starts learning more about Daphne and Jackson's marriage. Notably, she finds out that Jackson always wanted a son. As she spends more time with Jackson, she manages to seduce him into starting an affair with her. Finally, she gets pregnant with a son, and Jackson agrees to try to leave his wife for her.

In Part II, we learn that Daphne has ben miserable in this marriage and wanted out for a long time. Daphne describes how she fell for Jackson because he took an interest in her foundation, and he swept her off her feet. He also stayed by her side when her father had a heart attack. They married shortly after, but soon after he starts trying to emotionally intimidate her. After they have their first child, things get significantly worse as he tries to break her down and harasses her about her weight.

Afterwards, Daphne tried to leave Jackson, but he'd already had a judge declare her as depressed and a danger to her child. Jackson had her put in a mental health facility and told her she needed to behave or he'd put her back there. He also forced her to keep seeing a therapist who was a friend of his and whose notes will say whatever Jackson wants them. Bella was eventually born, and Jackson continued to exercise control over the whole family.

Daphne stops fighting back until she meets and befriends Amber. The friendship is real up until Meredith reveals that Amber isn't her real name. Daphne finally gets suspicious and hires a private detective to look into Amber and learns the truth about her past as Lana Crumb. From there, she sets about creating circumstances to allow Jackson to cheat on her with Amber.

In Part III, Jackson tells Daphne that he's leaving her for Amber, and Daphne pretends to be upset. Jackson and Amber get married, and the baby boy is born. Daphne ends up with millions in the divorce and gets custody over the kids, however. Jackson still has visitation rights. Daphne reveals the truth about Amber to Jackson and threatens to reveal the truth about her being a wanted criminal unless he gives up his visitation rights. Once he knows the truth, Jackson is terrible to Amber. Daphne's mother relocates to SoCal to be with her and the kids.

The book ends with Daphne visiting Jackson one last time to let him know that the new assistant he hired after Amber was actually working with her to give information to the Federal authorities about his illegal offshore accounts. The FBI then comes to raid his office and arrest him. Daphne pays Amber one last visit to tell her that she engineered this situation after learning that Amber falsely accused someone of rape because he wouldn't marry her. That man ended up in prison for two years and was beaten during that time and is now wheelchair-bound. Amber is unapologetic. Daphne then leaves.

For more detail, see the full Chapter-by-Chapter Summary.

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Book Review

The Last Mrs. Parrish was released back in October 17, 2017, and it was a Reese’s Book Club pick that became very popular at the time. I mostly ended up reading it because the sequel is coming out, and people online have pointed out the similarities the plot had to The Housemaid (which was released in 2022).

The plot of The Last Mrs. Parrish follows a woman, Amber, who has set her sights on befriending the glamorous and kind Daphne Parrish, with the hopes of getting close to and seducing Daphne’s handsome and wealthy husband, Jackson Parrish. Of course, things in mystery novels are rarely that simple, and there’s more going on than meets the eye.

This book is more of a slow burn mystery thriller, and it has a very solid plot twist.

I would say I enjoyed it, but it overstayed its welcome for me. The plot moves quite slowly, and there’s not enough depth to any of the characters to warrant the amount of time it spends fleshing out their internal thoughts.

Comparison to The Housemaid

The plot of this book has been compared to that of a more recent popular release, The Housemaid by Freida McFadden.

To be clear, The Last Mrs. Parrish came out first so any similarities are likely because the Housemaid may have cribbed some ideas from The Last Mrs. Parrish and not the other way around.

And there are a lot of similarities, including the big plot twist. But there’s also smaller similarities as well. The two books don’t handle everything identically, but there’s way too much specifics in common for it to be mere coincidence.

…And for this reason, it feels so awkward and uncomfortable for me to say that I actually enjoyed the Housemaid more.

I don’t feel great saying that because it clearly unabashedly took very specific ideas from The Last Mrs. Parrish. But The Last Mrs. Parrish moves a lot more slowly and didn’t quite build up tension as well as the Housemaid for me.

Read it or Skip it?

The Last Mrs. Parrish is a slow burn psychological thriller that has a very good plot twist, but moved a bit too slowly for my liking.

A part of me is curious about the follow-up novel The Next Mrs. Parrish, but I’m not entirely sure whether it’ll make it onto my reading list yet.

See The Last Mrs. Parrish on Amazon.

The Last Mrs. Parrish Audiobook

Narrator: Suzanne Elise Freeman & Meghan Wolf
Length: 11 hours 59 minutes

Hear a sample of The Last Mrs. Parrish audiobook on

Book Excerpt

Read the first pages of The Last Mrs. Parrish

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