#BlogTour #BookReview – I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeney

l Know Who You Are is the brilliant tale of two stories. One is about Aimee Sinclair—well-known actress on the verge of being full-on famous. If you saw her, you’d think you knew her. One day towards the near-end of her shoot on her latest film, Aimee comes home from filming to find her husband’s cell phone and wallet on the dining room table. He never goes anywhere without them. But he’s nowhere to be found. She’s not too concerned—they had a huge fight the night before. They both said things they didn’t mean. He might have done things he didn’t mean, things she can’t forget. Even though she has a history of supposedly forgetting. After all, she’s a very good actress.

The next morning she goes for her morning run and then goes to her favorite coffee shop. But her card is denied. When she calls the bank they say her account has been emptied of $10,000. She immediately suspects her husband. But they say no, it was Aimee herself who closed out the account. And thus begins a bizarre rabbit hole into which Aimee finds herself falling where nothing is at it seems.

Alternating with Aimee’s story is that of a little girl who wandered away from home. We always tell our kids not to talk to strangers or bad things will happen. Well, bad things happen.

In I Know Who You Are, Alice Feeney proves that she is a master at brilliantly complicated plots and twists after twists.

Published May 16th 2019 by HQ (UK)   

~ Review ~

It’s two years ago now that I was lucky enough to participate in the blog tour for Alice Feeney’s debut novel, Sometimes I Lie , and it is fair to say I was blown away. I’ve been eagerly awaiting her second book, I Know Who You Are, for what feels like forever! So when HQ got in touch to ask if I’d like to participate again it was a no brainer. Thank you HQ!

Some authors just have that knack of ferociously hooking their reader from the very first page and holding them captive right through to the end. Alice Feeney has it and then some. With I Know Who You Are she proves that the first time wasn’t just a fluke, but  a finally honed skill that once again had me glued to the pages.

In I Know Who You Are,  Feeney continues to explore the theme of identity and celebrity – the public persona versus the real self and how intermingled they become. I Know Who You Are takes it a step further and the reader is constantly suspicious of who is putting on act and who can be trusted. It makes for exhilarating and compulsive reading – I was never sure what to expect or where the twists and turns were going to take me.

There’s a dual timeline throughout the book, but I’m not going to go into detail regarding these as I wouldn’t want to give anything away. What I will say is that the earlier timeline is excellent, shocking and at times heartbreaking and so very well written. The chapters alternate between the two timelines and by the end of each one, I was unable to put the book down and just HAD to read one more.

Following on from such a successful, shocking and gripping book as Sometimes I Lie with a second novel must be difficult. Expectation among readers is high and the pressure to deliver again huge. It feels rather unfair to say that I just still prefer Sometime I Lie that little bit more, because this book by any standard is excellent and has all the ingredients readers will hope for. The ending is one hell of a shocking twist, and possibly a teeny weeny bit too bizarre – though really I’m being nit-picky here. It’s still a bloody brilliant book – a speed read that will leave you gasping at twists you won’t see coming a mile off. Sure to be this summers must read psychological thriller, this is one you definitely don’t want to miss.

Thanks to the publishers for providing me with a free copy for review

i know who you are BT

#BookReview – My lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

“The twist at the end of the first chapter made me read through the night” Jane Corry

Introducing the next generation of domestic thriller…

Every marriage has secrets. Everyone has flaws. Your wife isn’t perfect – you know that – but then again nor are you.

But now a serial killer is on the loose in your small town, preying on young women. Fear is driving your well-behaved young daughter off the rails, and you find yourself in bed late at night, looking at the woman who lies asleep beside you.

Because you thought you knew the worst about her. The truth is you know nothing at all.

This is a thriller like nothing you’ve read before… 

Published May 2nd 2019 by Penguin Michael Joseph (UK) 

~ Review ~ 

I don’t usually include quotes when adding publisher blurb to my reviews – but look right there at the top. Jane Corry’s quote HAD to stay because it’s just so damn true and didn’t the exact same thing happen to me.

There I was, yesterday evening, picking up my kindle and looking for something to catch my somewhat distracted attention and I chose this book. And by the end of the first chapter I was so completely caught off guard and gobsmacked I just couldn’t stop reading. Until I fell asleep, Kindle still in hand, sometime in the early hours. This morning I had an excruciating hour getting the teen to school before I could finally devour the final 20% of this book.

I can’t talk about the plot. The characters. The twist. You gotta go into this one completely innocent like I did. But it is good. really good. It’s different, it’s crazy, it’s twisted, sometimes I wondered what the hell had been going on in the authors mind. But it was utterly gripping and I loved it.

As a MASSIVE fan of the domestic thriller, even I become a little meh with the endless supply of “twists you won’t see coming” or “standout thriller’s of the year” books occasionally. But for me, My Lovely Wife was a reminder of what i love about this genre and why I’ll continue to read it enthusiastically. Samantha Downing has wrote something fresh, different and definitely a book to talk about. When I come to think about my books of the year post in December, this is one which will spring to mind immediately. If you like a dark edge to your holiday reading then this book is for you! Bloody brilliant!

(I read an advance ecopy courtesy of the publisher and netgalley)

#BookReview – A Good Enough Mother by Bev Thomas ( @FaberBooks )

The hardest lies to spot are the ones we tell ourselves.

Dr Ruth Hartland rises to difficult tasks. She is the director of a highly respected trauma therapy unit. She is confident, capable and excellent at her job. Today she is preoccupied by her son Tom’s disappearance.

So when a new patient arrives at the unit – a young man who looks shockingly like Tom – she is floored.

As a therapist, Ruth knows exactly what she should do in the best interests of her client, but as a mother she makes a very different choice – a decision that will have profound consequences.

A gripping and deeply intelligent psychological thriller for fans of Apple Tree Yard, A Good Enough Mother promises to be as big as Lullaby.

Published April 4th by Faber and Faber (UK) 

~ Review ~ 

Wow! This was one of those books where once you start reading you have to clear the rest of your day, put your phone on silent and keep on going. There’s no looking away. You can sense the increasing tension and know it’s leading to something huge. It’s utterly gripping.

Ruth is a therapist working with people with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, dealing with those who have the most harrowing of backgrounds. But Ruth is also hiding a secret of her own- her troubled son Dan disappeared more than a year ago and she hasn’t shared this with any of her colleagues. When she’s allocated a new patient, Dan, she is struck by his resemblance to her own son and as she becomes more involved in helping him, the lines between therapist and patient blur in a way that can only lead to danger.

I absolutely loved the writing style in this book. There’s little dialogue, it mainly being told from Ruth’s internal thoughts. You know how she’s feeling and why she’s feeling it with astonishing clarity meaning it’s almost like being in her head. The whole story is so compelling, as we see Ruth make bad choices and know it’s isn’t going to end well. Yet despite knowing her choices are bad, you get it and understand it. Her feelings of grief, bewilderment and pain are incredibly raw and emotional.

The tension throughout this book is subtle, yet intense all at once. Dan brings a sense of danger and threat that has the reader on edge. He’s difficult to work out, there’s an uneasy feeling from him but I could see why Ruth was so drawn to him. It was also fascinating to see Ruth as a therapist with her own flaws and troubles. We see people in this field as stable, without conflict or worry – they know how to deal with or avoid it surely? Of course this isn’t true, but why Ruth shields her own trauma and anxieties from colleagues.

This is not a lighthearted book, there’s an overwhelming feeling of impeding tragedy throughout, however it is thought provoking and shocking with a glimpse of hope at the end. It’s raw, emotional, tense and incredibly believable.  An exceptional book from a fascinating perspective and I couldn’t put it down.

(I read an hardback edition courtesy of the publisher)

**Due to some unforeseen circumstances, this is a late contribution to the blog tour that took place earlier this month. Please do check out these other brilliant bloggers to see what they made of it!

a good enough mother bt

 

#BookReview – The Hidden Wife by Amanda Reynolds (@amandareynoldsj @Wildfirebks)

WHAT HAPPENED TO JULIA BLAKE?

She was young and beautiful, married to a famous author. They were celebrating their anniversary at their stunning country estate. So why did Julia Blake walk out of her perfect life, apparently leaving no trace?

Seren, a junior reporter for the local paper, can’t believe her luck when she lands an exclusive with Julia’s husband, Max. But as Seren spends more time at the couple’s remote mansion, probing ever deeper into the case, dark questions await.

What was Julia really like, behind closed doors? Was her marriage to this brooding, secretive man as perfect as it seemed? And did she really mean to disappear that night – or was she murdered?

Published March 2019 (E-Book) / July 2019 (Paperback) by Wildfire Books (UK)  

~ Review ~ 

Having really enjoyed Amanda Reynold’s previous books, Close To Me and Lying To You, I couldn’t wait to get started on her latest release, The Hidden Wife. As always, I found myself engrossed in this author’s incredibly compelling writing almost immediately and I was pleasantly surprised by the different feel and mood of this book.

In her previous two books, Amanda Reynolds has used the unreliable narrator to great effect. The Hidden Wife switches things up though, and this time we are firmly on Seren’s side as she attempts to untangle the mystery of famous author, Max Blake’s beautiful and much younger wife while interviewing him for her local newspaper.

There are three main characters in this book – Seren, a somewhat naive and eager to please junior reporter driven by her own tragic loss, Max – a brooding, charming but weirdly creepy and manipulative author (kind of reminiscent of Edward Monkford in J.P Delaney’s The Girl Before in many ways). And Brooke House, Max’s sprawling and remote mansion which was so atmospheric and eerie, lending a gothic hint which I absolutely loved.

I flew through this book, but that doesn’t surprise me – it’s what I’ve come to expect from Amanda’s novels. She really knows how to hook the reader, throwing twists and turns skillfully to keep you on the edge of your seat. I adored the uncertainty cast over missing Julia – had she disappeared of her own accord, or was something more sinister really at play? Mixed with such a well depicted setting which sent chills down my spine, The Hidden Wife has all the ingredients of a fantastic psychological thriller and I loved every second of it.

(I read an advance e-copy courtesy of the publisher and netgalley)

 

 

#BlogTour #BookReview – Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson

Catching a killer is dangerous—especially if he lives next door

From the hugely talented author of The Kind Worth Killing comes an exquisitely chilling tale of a young suburban wife with a history of psychological instability whose fears about her new neighbor could lead them both to murder . . .

Hen and her husband Lloyd have settled into a quiet life in a new house outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Hen (short for Henrietta) is an illustrator and works out of a studio nearby, and has found the right meds to control her bipolar disorder. Finally, she’s found some stability and peace.

But when they meet the neighbors next door, that calm begins to erode as she spots a familiar object displayed on the husband’s office shelf. The sports trophy looks exactly like one that went missing from the home of a young man who was killed two years ago. Hen knows because she’s long had a fascination with this unsolved murder—an obsession she doesn’t talk about anymore, but can’t fully shake either.

Could her neighbor, Matthew, be a killer? Or is this the beginning of another psychotic episode like the one she suffered back in college, when she became so consumed with proving a fellow student guilty that she ended up hurting a classmate?

The more Hen observes Matthew, the more she suspects he’s planning something truly terrifying. Yet no one will believe her. Then one night, when she comes face to face with Matthew in a dark parking lot, she realizes that he knows she’s been watching him, that she’s really on to him. And that this is the beginning of a horrifying nightmare she may not live to escape. . . 

Published March 7th 2019 by Faber & Faber (UK)

This is the first book by Peter Swanson I’ve read, and so had no idea what to expect. I did however really like the sound of it. I’m so glad I did though and it most certainly won’t be the last.

Before She Knew Him tells the story of Hen, an artist with a history of mental health problems manifesting in over imagination, suspicion and obsession. When she and husband Lloyd move into a quiet suburb it’s a new start and a chance to put a difficult episode behind them. But when their new next door neighbours, Mira and Matthew, invite them to dinner and Hen spots an item she believes links Matthew to a violent murder, it looks like Hen may be spiralling into ill health again. With her history, no-one is prepared to believe her. Is Hen loosing her grip on reality or is she really living next door to a serial killer?

I absolutely loved the style of writing in this book … it’s very distinct, with chapters alternating between Hen and Matthew. The tone struck an incredibly sinister atmosphere and had me turning pages furiously as it was so engaging and compulsive.

I loved the sense of conflict Peter Swanson creates in the character of Hen. There’s a vulnerability and honesty that has the reader completely on her side, yet all the while there’s an uncertainty whether she is right or is indeed gripped by a psychotic episode. Matthew is a masterclass in cold, clever and creepy. My skin actually crawled at some points.

This is a dark and disturbing story, exploring the impact of domestic violence, sexual abuse and childhood abuse on an individuals mental health and personality. It is shocking in it’s believability – I could almost feel sorry at times where I most certainly shouldn’t have. As thrilling as this book is, it also gives the reader lots to think about.

The book ends with a great twist I really didn’t see coming – and as a seasoned psychological thriller reader I’m not often this taken in by a twist. Though it left me feeling as if I should have spotted it – it’s clever and completely believable. I raced through this book, I loved the creepy, sinister atmosphere and the conflict and uncertainty  it provoked. An excellent read, and an author I’ll be making sure I read a lot more of in the future.

I read a free copy of this book courtesy of the Publisher  

before she knew him bt

#BookReview – The Wife’s Shadow by Cath Weeks

From one of Elle magazine’s ‘authors to watch’ comes a twisty, suspenseful and emotionally fraught novel about how little we really know the person we marry. For fans of The Affair and Dr Foster.

Every woman has a secret…

Everyone admires Suzy and her doll’s house life. She has a gorgeous family, a beautiful home and a successful business. But Suzy hasn’t always been in control. In her past lies a shadowy tale of fear and instability – a life that she once ran away from, and has hidden from ever since.

When Suzy starts being followed, she fears that her past may finally be catching up on her. And when she finds herself unable to do what to her is the most important thing – keep her loved ones safe – she has to decide how far she’d be willing to go to win everything back.

Even if it means sacrificing everything she knows and loves..

Published in Ebook – September 2018/ Paperback- March 2019 by Little Brown (UK)

~ Review ~  

When I was invited to read The Wife’s Shadow on Netgalley I’ll admit to not knowing all that much about it. I was swayed by the gorgeous cover though and the premise of a perfect life being not quite as it seems. And actually, I was very pleasantly surprised, because The Wife’s Shadow ended up being quite different to how I expected it, but in a good way.

The book begins when Suzy starts to notice strange things linking to her childhood in a town many miles away – a packet of red cigarette papers, a leaflet for a local event and an old toy. All of them pretty mundane but incredibly significant to Suzy. Convinced someone is following her and trying to scare her, she sets off to find out what really happened all those years ago. But knowing the truth doesn’t bring Suzy peace of mind as she starts to feel she is loosing control of her life and sanity. Is it the ghosts of the past who are haunting Suzy or is there something more sinister at play in her present.

Right from the beginning, I was gripped by this book. I loved how an uneasy feeling was built as Suzy becomes increasingly confused by what’s happening. The decline of Suzy’s apparent mental stability is expertly done, as she transforms from  strong, controlled and assured to weak, anxious and uncertain. It’s all very subtle and leaves the reader wondering what’s really going on or is it all in Suzy’s mind?

I thought the flashbacks to her past were very good, slowly building a picture of a troubled childhood and an impending sense of doom that something awful is going to happen. Cath Weeks tackles the difficult topic of domestic violence, and the impact on children who witness it, sensitively. The glimpses of her childhood also allow the reader to understand Suzy’s actions and behavior in the present, making her easy to sympathise with, even while doubting her reliability.

The cover and the synopsis scream psychological thriller, and yes there is a strong element of suspense. But this book isn’t just about the big twists, it’s is also a strong character study, of a woman who’s suffered childhood trauma, manipulation, betrayal and is struggling to let go of her past. Suzy was a character I was really rooting for by the end. There’s a lot packed into this book, and I wondered how all the threads were going to tie together and I wasn’t disappointed when they did. If you like a more subtle psychological read with a strong lead character and complex layers, then I would recommend THE WIFE’S SHADOW without hesitation.

(I read an advance ebook edition courtesy of the publisher and Netgalley)

 

#BookReview – The Night Olivia Fell by Christina McDonald

They said it was an accident. Her mother knows they’re lying. But the truth comes with a price…

A fast-paced and action packed psychological thriller that is full of twists and turns you won’t see coming. The Night Olivia Fell is the most gripping suspense mystery you’ll read this year.

IT’S EVERY PARENT’S WORST NIGHTMARE.

Abi Knight is startled awake in the middle of the night to a ringing phone and devastating news – her teenage daughter, Olivia, has been in a terrible accident.

Abi is told that Olivia slipped and fell from a bridge into the icy water below, and now she lies silent, dependent on life support.

But then Abi sees the angry bruises around Olivia’s wrists and learns that her sensible daughter is in fact three months pregnant . . .

WOULD YOU BELIEVE IT IF THEY TOLD YOU IT WAS AN ACCIDENT?

Published by HQ Stories (UK) February 2019 

~ Review ~

I started reading The Night Olivia Fell with high expectations. I’d read some fantastic reviews and the plot sounded right up my street. For anyone who follows my reviews, you may notice I’m a very emotional reader – I like a book that’s going to make me grin like a Cheshire cat or cry big fat ugly tears. This book seemed like it was made for me.

So maybe it was those high expectations that got in the way when I first started reading this book. It took me a while to get into, feeling a bit slow paced and not altogether gripping me. I think the main issue was that I just didn’t gel with main character, Abi, whose daughter Olivia is on life support waiting to give birth. She’s prickly, aggressive, and in the flashbacks to life before the accident, controlling and oppressive towards teen Olivia.

However, as I read on I started  to relate to her. Abi and I have a lot in common, and as a single parent I remember that feeling of wanting to prove your child can have every opportunity a child with two parents can have. As we learn more of her backstory, I could empathise and understand her, and her overwhelming fear of loosing those she loves.  And I really enjoyed watching her character develop, as she overcame her demons of both past and present.

The mystery of what happened to Olivia is tightly woven and while there’s clear suspects marked out, it really could have been any of them right up until the reveal. This is a complex mystery, wrapped up in secrets and lies, some designed to protect and others to destroy. At it’s heart is a young girl, Olivia, who tragically seems to be manipulated from all sides, yet remains a thoughtful, caring and optimistic young woman. Whereas I initially found Abi difficult, I loved hearing Olivia’s story in the flashback chapters leading up to that fateful night.

The final third of this book was excellent. I read it with held breath, tears streaming down my face so heavily I couldn’t see the page. All the emotion I missed at the begin is there in those final heartbreaking pages with some incredibly tender and moving writing searing my heart. I was glad I’d stuck with this book, it was well worth it in the end and I think this is a story that will stay with me for quite sometime, as well as serving as a reminder to appreciate my own teen daughter. This is a story that will  slowly creep under your skin and rip your heart out before putting it back together again.

(I read an advance ebook courtesy of the publisher and netgalley)

#BookReview – Friends like These by Sarah Alderson

We all know someone like Becca.

She has the job everyone wants, a designer wardrobe, a hot-shot lawyer boyfriend, holidays to exotic locations. And she flaunts her perfect life all over social media.

It drove her colleague Lizzie mad, but she couldn’t stop looking. They were never really friends – and yet Lizzie knew everything about her.

Or did she?

When chance, and a terrible mistake, pulls Lizzie back into Becca’s orbit years after they lost touch, she’ll realise that you can’t always believe what you see online… and that finding out the truth might be the worst thing you can do.

There’s no such thing as a perfect life. Only a perfect lie.

Published December 2018 by Mulholland Books (UK)

~ Review ~  

I absolutely love a creepy, crazy, twisted character and Friends Like These has two of them. This book was RIGHT up my street. I loved this book and was utterly gripped from beginning to end.

It starts with a 999 transcript, with no indication of who’s making the call. The book then backtracks five days and we discover the events that lead to that terrifying and frantic call. It’s kind of like you know how it will end, but the need to know just how and who really drives this book, making it such a compelling read.

We’ve all searched out someone on social media, just out of curiosity and to have a nosy into their lives – right? Lizzie can’t believe it when one drunken night she finally finds an ex-colleague, Becca, on Facebook. Keen to share her discovery with her friend, Flora, she sends her a message linking the page – along with a few bitchy comments. But the next morning, Lizzie realises she actually sent the message to Becca herself. And Becca isn’t happy about this at all.

Can. You. Imagine? I will NEVER send a Facebook message without triple checking again!

Lizzie’s mistake sets of a roller coaster of twists and turns, where nothing is ever as you expect. It’s impossible to know who you can trust, is Lizzie or Becca the crazy one? The gripping, twisty writing is peppered with subtle dark humour that also really appealed to me, along with a cautionary tale of the perils of social media.

I’m being purposefully vague because I don’t want to give anything away, which is making this a difficult review to write. I just want to tell you how great this book is – hopefully you’ll take my word for it. I read a lot of psychological thrillers and this one really stood out to me. It’s a little bit different, a gripping page turner and well worth a read! I loved it!

(I read an advance proof copy courtesy of The Amazon Vine Program and the Publisher)

#BookReview – The Flower Girls by Alice Clark-Platts

YOU’LL NEVER FORGET THE FLOWER GIRLS

The Flower Girls. Laurel and Primrose.

One convicted of murder, the other given a new identity.

Now, nineteen years later, another child has gone missing.

And The Flower Girls are about to hit the headlines all over again…

Published January 2019 by Raven Books 

~ Review ~

I can’t remember how or when I heard about The Flower Girls, but it jumped straight into my pre-order basket. Months later when it eventually dropped through my letterbox, I abandoned all plans and snuggled down to read it.

“The Flower Girls” are sisters Laurel and Rosie – infamous for a brutal murder when only children themselves. While older sister Laurel has been in prison for many years, Rosie – only six years old at the time of the killing- has spent the last couple of decades living with a new identity and in fear that one day someone will work out who she actually is. And then, another child goes missing from the hotel she is staying at with her parents. A hotel where Rosie (now known as Hazel) is also on the guest list…

Wow, this was an unsettling and dark read. With the past and present eerily twisting and colliding, The Flower Girl’s had me engrossed. I flew through the pages, desperate to unravel the mystery of the missing girl in the present and just what had happened all those years ago to drive two seemingly innocent little girls to commit such an horrific act.

As expected, this is often an uncomfortable and disturbing book which challenges the reader to consider whether a person is shaped by their early experiences or are inherently bad. It prompts us to question whether someone who commits such an atrocious crime at such a young age can ever be rehabilitated and released back into the community. We see the impact on the victim’s family – grief, bitterness and an overwhelming need for justice and revenge. My mind whirred as I read this book, as I was forced to question, then question again.

Throughout the book, the author creates a chilling sense of unease with undercurrents of  suspicion and doubt. I never knew quite exactly what to believe or expect as I read The Flower Girls. With some shocking twists thrown in right at the end, this is a book with impact – it will shock and disturb, leaving you thinking about it long after you turn the last page. If I had one complaint, then it would be that I’d like to have known a little more about the sister’s early life and what made them the way they were … this bit felt a little glossed over and I would’ve liked to understand (if ever you could) them more. However, one complaint aside, I felt this was a smart, thought provoking and dark thriller which had me hooked from beginning to end. Recommended!

 

 

 

#BookReview – The Rumour by Lesley Kara

When single mum Joanna hears a rumour at the school gates, she never intends to pass it on. But one casual comment leads to another and now there’s no going back 

Rumour has it that a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in their sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea.

Sally McGowan was just ten years old when she stabbed little Robbie Harris to death forty-eight years ago – no photos of her exist since her release as a young woman.

So who is the supposedly reformed killer who now lives among them? How dangerous can one rumour become? And how far will Joanna go to protect her loved ones from harm, when she realizes what it is she’s unleashed? 

Published December 2018 by Bantam Press (UK) 

~ Review ~

Lesley Kara’s debut novel, The Rumour, is immediately gripping. It’s one of those books which you start, and then when you next look up a huge chunk of both time and pages have flown by. This is down to both her incredibly catchy and easy writing style and her ability to create remarkably recognisable and relatable characters.

We’ve all been there … said a little more then we meant to, got caught up in a moment. But when Joanna finds herself involved in gossip about the rumours flying around her local community, she has no idea of the danger she will shortly be facing. I thought Joanna was portrayed perfectly and could relate to her feelings of isolation, wanting to fit in and unease with herself. I also thought the tense, simmering anger of the small town was perfectly captured,  as fingers started pointing and revenge is sought. I’ve lived in that small town kind of environment – I’ve seen how quickly rumours can spread, evolve and completely spiral out of control. Lesley Kara’s The Rumour is absolutely on point in that respect and completely believable.

I got completely caught up in this book, desperately wanting to know just who was the notorious child killer and wondered why they seemed so intent on singling out Joanna for her part in the gossip and speculation. Kara throws the reader off scent several times with red herrings, which kept me on my toes and glued to the pages. The first half of the book was excellent, I couldn’t put it down and it was heading towards five star read status. However, I guessed the big twist just before it came, which unfortunately for me dampened the impact a bit. And while I could’ve lived with this, I thought the ending became a little far fetched. Whereas I’d been completely convinced for the majority of the book, the ending just lacked quite as much credibility for me.

The Rumour is still a great read. The writing flows, keeps the reader engaged and the pages turn effortlessly. The themes of small town mentality, gossip, rumour and revenge are a fascinating and compelling combination. It’s a very solid debut and despite feeling some of the impact was lost at the end, I still enjoyed this book very much and will definitely look out for more from the author in the future.

*I read a free advance readers copy courtesy of the Amazon Vine Program and the publisher*