About the Book
Helen has it all…
Daniel is the perfect husband.
Rory is the perfect brother.
Serena is the perfect sister-in-law.
And Rachel? Rachel is the perfect nightmare.
When Helen, finally pregnant after years of tragedy, attends her first antenatal class, she is expecting her loving architect husband to arrive soon after, along with her confident, charming brother Rory and his pregnant wife, the effortlessly beautiful Serena. What she is not expecting is Rachel.
Extroverted, brash, unsettling single mother-to-be Rachel, who just wants to be Helen’s friend. Who just wants to get know Helen and her friends and her family. Who just wants to know everything about them. Every little secret…
Format: Paperback (448 pages) Publisher: Raven
Publication date: 1st March 2022 Genre: Thriller
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In this debut novel, the author has combined all the elements you’d expect from a psychological thriller: an intriguing prologue, multiple points of view, some time shifts and an ocean full of red herrings. Okay, there are some points that stretch credulity but the short chapters and engrossing plot keep you turning the pages despite that.
The story is told mostly through the eyes of Helen, with occasional chapters from the point of view of her sister-in-law Serena, and Katie, the girlfriend of Helen’s brother. Poor Helen comes across as extremely naive and easily manipulated, her concern about her pregnancy clouding her eyes to what’s going on around her, especially when it comes to her husband, Daniel. You won’t be surprised to learn that not everyone is quite what they seem and people presented as ‘perfect’ are often just the opposite. Katie was the character who seemed to have her feet most firmly on the ground using her journalistic skills to try to discover what exactly what was going on, not just what was being presented to her.
Although I guessed some of the plot twists, I’ll confess I didn’t guess them all and the author throws in some clever deflections, false trails and a killer final sentence.
This was a book club pick and all the members agreed this was a well-crafted thriller that would make a great beach read, would be perfect as a Sunday night television drama but probably wouldn’t be a book they’d pick up and read again.
In three words: Compelling, fast-paced, twisty
Try something similar: The Couple at No. 9 by Claire Douglas
About the Author
Katherine is a novelist and journalist. After studying history at Cambridge, she completed a postgraduate diploma in journalism, and has spent a decade working for national newspapers. She has worked as an investigative reporter and won the Cudlipp Award for public interest journalism for her undercover work. She is now the Head of News Projects for the Sunday Times. She lives in north London with her husband and two daughters. (Photo: Goodreads author page)
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