Verity Book Summary - Verity Book explained in key points
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Verity summary

Colleen Hoover

A #1 Bestselling Psychological Thriller With Bone-Chilling Twists

4 (161 ratings)
20 mins
5 key ideas
Audio & text

What is Verity about?

Verity (2018) is the breakout thriller leaving mystery fans breathless. Taut and tense, with a final plot twist delivered like a sucker-punch, the novel leaves readers questioning everything in the end — especially the truth.

About the Author

Colleen Hoover is a New York Times bestselling author of novels and novellas. She is also the founder of The Bookworm Box, a non-profit bookstore and subscription service in Texas.

Table of Contents

    summarized in 5 key ideas

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    Key idea 1 of 5

    A lifeline appears

    After the shock of this opening paragraph, early chapters follow Lowen as she and the mysterious stranger’s lives begin to entwine. During their brief exchange in the restroom, Lowen learned his name, Jeremy, and that he too, had suffered recent loss. His twin daughters died just months apart. Lowen also discovers Jeremy is headed to a meeting with her.

    The meeting includes Lowen’s current agent and ex-lover, Corey, that the publisher of  world-renowned author Verity Crawford is looking for a writer to finish her popular series of novels. Written from the villain's point of view, the series has garnered international acclaim — but the author, Jeremy’s wife, has suffered a recent car accident and is now disabled. 

    Offered a life-changing flat fee to take over the writing, Lowen struggles with this new dimension of tragedy. She initially rejects stepping in for another writer in the midst of such tragedy, especially working so close to the grieving husband she feels attracted to. 

    But weighing impending eviction against the offer of work and an invitation to stay in the Crawford family home while she reviews Verity’s notes and outlines, Lowen takes the job. Arriving at the Vermont estate, she meets Verity’s only surviving child, Crew, a young boy who seems lost and confused. Lowen meets Verity herself, now ensconced in an upstairs bedroom completely disabled by the car accident and cared for by a nurse. The famous writer seems unaware of her surroundings, a physical shell. 

    Reassured, Lowen is put in the master bedroom the couple once shared. Her history of sleepwalking makes her wary — though she’s too ashamed to share this with her host, and just asks about a lock. Going through the boxes of Verity’s papers, it isn’t long before Lowen spots a manuscript she doesn’t recognize - titled So Be It

    The book then switches to the opening chapter of Verity’s manuscript as Lowen discovers it to be an unpublished autobiography — with a chilling author’s note. Devouring the first chapter, it recounts the evening Verity met Jeremy, and their steaming hot romance. Verity’s voice is full of confidence, but more than obsessive about her attraction to Jeremy. The chapter closes on a chilling foreshadowing, when Verity confesses that Jeremy loved her like she meant everything to him, until he found something that meant more. 

    Overwhelmed by the sexy details and dark foreshadowing, Lowen stumbles into Jeremy. Making small talk in the kitchen, she asks him to recount his memories of the evening he first met Verity, in the hopes that what she just read is fantasy. When the details of his story match with Verity’s, Lowen is convinced the manuscript is genuine.

    Now obsessed with knowing more, Lowen dives back into the next chapter. As Verity’s tale plunges deeper into her obsession with Jeremy, her addiction to him and his absolute perfection as a partner, Lowen devours the details, and finds herself more and more attracted to her host. The second chapter of So Be It closes with Verity and Jeremy becoming engaged and Verity getting pregnant, followed by even darker foreshadowing of tragedy to come. 


    The opening chapters of a mystery have a lot of work to do. They introduce the main characters, along with details about their histories, faults or circumstances that will drive each of them toward a reveal. They detail the central conflict and establish the setting in which the story will play out. The opening chapters of Verity also establish several parallels that will have deep significance as events unfold. 

    First, the recent losses experienced by Lowen and Jeremy in an emotionally-charged opening scene literally splattered with blood. We discover that Lowen’s relationship with her literary agent, Corey, was ill-fated because he’d fallen in love with her written characters and not her as a person. As Lowen finds herself devouring Verity’s manuscript about Jeremy, it becomes clear that she may be making the same mistake.

    The most central parallel is also being drawn — between Lowen and Verity. The structure of a book-within-a-book gives the protagonist voice to both these central characters. Functioning as dark mirrors of one another, the two writers have contrasting lives in almost everything, except both have suffered, and they’re both attracted to Jeremy. Lowen’s perception of her sleepwalking as a threat, sets up a parallel for Verity also becoming a threat.. 

    Finally, the setting: an expansive, dark and isolated Vermont estate that was itself the scene of a family tragedy when daughter Harper drowned in the lake behind the house. Lowen’s eviction means she’ll be forced to stay at least a few days in the home despite her instinct to get out. With the characters under the same roof, the mystery of the manuscript can unfold, as we’re driven through parallel discoveries from both Lowen and Verity’s perspective.

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    Who should read Verity

    • Anyone curious about the plot twists that dominate the buzz around the book
    • Thriller fans and true-crime lovers craving stories full of unreliable narrators
    • Novel lovers seeking tales that turn storytelling on its head - with chilling results

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