What should be a cozy and fun-filled weekend deep in the English countryside takes a sinister turn in Ruth Ware’s suspenseful, compulsive, and darkly twisted psychological thriller.
Sometimes the only thing to fear…is yourself.
When reclusive writer Leonora is invited to the English countryside for a weekend away, she reluctantly agrees to make the trip. But as the first night falls, revelations unfold among friends old and new, an unnerving memory shatters Leonora’s reserve, and a haunting realization creeps in: the party is not alone in the woods.
From the very beginning, this book draws you in and leaves you wondering “what’s going on?”, but in a good way. This book leaves you in suspense, always leaving two questions when one gets answered. With such a remote setting to add to the chills, it takes well placed reveals, as well as doubts into the narrator’s own reliability that make this a wonderful read. Sure, there will be a character or two that annoy you, and a couple of scenes that would make the reader feel uncomfortable (I know I was), but don’t let those pieces take away from the overall scene. Take a dive into this book, fellow reader, and beware, not everyone is what they appear to be.
Before I begin, hi everyone. I’m back. September is probably going to be a rough month for me for the foreseeable future, so I do apologize in advance if I suddenly and randomly disappear. Plus, starting a book that requires A LOT of focus on didn’t help matters (seriously, when one of the SIXTEEN POVs is a character with the name of Hajjaj, one has to question their reading choices). So, here I am. Thank you for being patient with me, and thanks for sticking around.
Anyway, on with the book. This is a marvelous read. If you’re anything like me, you won’t be able to put it down. The book wastes no time in throwing you into the mystery, and continues to bring you into it little by little. With every new piece of the puzzle revealed, it draws you further in, and at times, further away from the truth.
I mentioned in my review above that it would make you feel uncomfortable. Well, one of the big parts of the plot is about love, and the effects that it can have on a person, even a decade after the fact. And, during this hen party, the trivia session that took place in the car made me feel rather uncomfortable, because I could see myself in Nora’s shoes (granted, in a reversed sort of situation, but you catch my drift).
This book also makes great use of the unreliable narrator, but in a way that makes it perfect for the plot. While most unreliable narrators that we get are that way from the beginning, we get that sense towards the middle of the read, and it provides to be more of a way to drive the plot along than a hindrance (like some other unreliable narrators that I know The Girl on the Train *coughcough*). In fact, like The Girl on the Train, there’s a character in this book that I couldn’t stand, but instead of it being the MC this time; it’s the maid of honor and thrower of the disastrous hen party, Flo. I could not be sympathetic towards her, especially before we got to all of the reveals.
There, that’s all I’ve got. Seriously, go check out this read. Dive within the pages, and let the mystery unfold for you. Just, keep on your toes. You don’t know who you can trust.