Pretense – Lori Wick | A Review


This amazing novel took me months to read, but only because I read half of it, then returned it to the library and didn’t pick it back up again for a few months, then finished it. Lori Wick always has me on the edge of my seat; her characters are so believable and so very likeable, and on top of that, the stories are amazing! Pretense was great, although not my favorite of her work (The Pursuit is her best, in my opinion). There were some things toward the end of Pretense that irritated me – different predictable events kept happening, and it felt like watching a whodunit and knowing who did it instead of enjoying the element of surprise, haha! At 700 pages, it was still a fun read, although I did feel antsy toward the end, wishing it would’ve wrapped up a bit quicker.


  • Mackenzie Bishop
  • Delancey Bishop


I would hate to give away any huge spoilers to a potential reader! In Pretense, there are so many twists and turns, high points and low points. In fact, you’ll find me doing one of two things while reading it: smiling with tears in my eyes, or frowning and wanting to throw it across the room for the injustices of life. Try reading the first few chapters to get a feel for the Bishops, and if you like them (I think you will), I definitely recommend reading the rest! They’re wonderful.

If you end up getting discouraged by the frequent turn of events, thinking Will their lives ever get better? and such, I’d like to tell you that YES, it gets so much better.


What I Liked:

  • I loved that its 700 pages spans over the course of Mackenzie and Delancey’s lives! I really enjoyed getting to follow along as they grow up, starting at the ages of 8 (Delancey) and 9 (Mackenzie), then into their early 20s toward the end, through the joys and tragedies of life.
  • How Wick writes is fantastic. All of her books are written just how I like them: a lot of dialogue, but not to the point where you feel like you’re reading a play; and just enough descriptions so that you know what facial expressions, as well as settings, look like. (However, she usually leaves it up to the reader to imagine how the characters look, which is a blessing and a curse!)
  • The plot twists. I’ve never found so many in one book! And I suppose that’s because Pretense truly is realistic fiction; life always has a way of surprising us. A few times, though, I felt like events were rushed to move the plot along, and other things occurred that seemed predictable and cliché to my scrutinizing eye. To the more relaxed reader (lol), this would not be a problem.

Favorite Parts:

  • When Mackenzie and Delancey were accepted by someone they thought would reject them. I don’t want to dish spoilers out, so just take my word for it that that scene was sweet, haha!
  • Mackenzie’s and Delancey’s testimonies. *happy, contented sigh*
  • Tom Magy. *laughs* Okay, I know that’s not a part, but I still ended up really liking him.
  • Mackenzie’s love story. Not that Delancey’s wasn’t extremely sweet, but I enjoyed Mackenzie’s more.

Do I Recommend It?

Do you…

  • love Christian fiction? YES! By halfway through the book, I started feeling like the sisters’ lives wouldn’t ever get better, but how the Lord saves them from the paths they were beginning to take is beautiful.
  • love learning about the Army? Yes! That is a major focus in this book.
  • love learning about editing/publishing? Yes! I’ve really enjoyed this aspect of Pretense, since I hope to be published writer someday.

-~- Maggie

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