Saturday, February 24, 2024

BLOG TOUR - The Custody Battle



“What’s going to happen to me?” my little girl asks, clutching her teddy bear tight. “Daddy and I love you,” I reply. “Nothing is going to change.” But I was so wrong. How far will I have to go to keep my darling daughter?

When Greg and I first decided to separate, we promised to keep it civil for our daughter Lola. So when she stopped wanting to hug me, I thought Lola was just struggling with the divorce. Then she started screaming at me, calling me a liar, and I could hear Greg in her words. I’m certain he’s trying to turn our baby against me.

He’s determined to dig up dirt on me, to make the court think I’m a terrible mother… But two can play that game.

So when he reveals the worst thing I have ever done, my heart pounds in my chest. Because I know Greg’s deep dark secrets, too. But the more we each try to win, the harder it is to turn back. Now I’m terrified that we’ve put Lola in terrible danger…

By the time we realise what we’ve done, will it be too late for us to save her, or ourselves?

A completely gripping dark domestic suspense novel about a family tearing themselves apart, perfect for fans of Liane Moriarty and Sally Hepworth.



Title:   The Custody Battle
Author:  Ellie Monago
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   General Fiction
Format:  Audio and Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   356
Narrators:  Davis Brooks, Sarah Borges
Length:  10 hr 34 min
Date of Publication:   February 21, 2024
My Rating:   4 Stars

Madeline and Greg start off with the intent of having an amicable divorce. As far as Greg was concerned, they had a good marriage. In fact, he is gobsmacked when Madeline wants to dissolve the marriage. She is a pediatrician and he is an architect and they wanted for nothing. In fact, their home was a $5 million dollar showplace. The couple has a young daughter, and they decide on custody issues.

Greg soon realizes that Madeline was pretty much the manager in their marriage, and made some of the more critical decisions over the years. In fact, she gives him a list of names of divorce attorneys for him to choose from. Then there is Sidney, Madeline's best friend. Sidney just might find herself caught in the middle of Madeline and Greg.

This book by Ellie Monago was heavy on drama, with a few surprises thrown in. The custody battle made me think of the decades-old movie, Kramer vs. Kramer, to the tune that no matter how amicable things start out they won't necessarily stay that way. Things can change on a dime and that is what kept me riveted to this dramatic read.

I enjoyed the narration of this book when it came to Madeline's and Greg's points of view. Some of the additional dialogue by other characters was rather unimpressive, odd in one character's case to be sure. Nonetheless, I really could not put this book down and listened to it in one siting. 

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Ellie Monago is the pen name of an acclaimed novelist and practicing therapist. She’s also a wife and mother, and when you add it all up, she doesn’t wind up with much time for hobbies. But she’s an avid tennis fan, a passionate reader of both fiction and nonfiction—especially memoir (nothing’s as juicy as the truth!)—and she relishes a good craft cocktail.

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