Lex has spent years trying to forge an identity for herself beyond that of Girl A - the one who escaped from her parent's horrific abuse and raised the alarm to save her siblings. Now an adult, with a successful legal career in New York, she is dragged back to her childhood trauma when her mother dies in prison and names Lex as executor of her will. As Lex reconnects with her siblings, many of whom she hasn't seen for years, she must confront the insidious grip they have on each other's lives, not to mention the dark coping strategies that can hold back the past no longer.
The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell: Thriller-Edition Escapism
Rating: 3 stars
Summary: When Libby inherits a mansion from the biological parents she never knew, it offers life-changing possibilities and the ticket out of her dead-end job. However, this once-lavish house holds the story of Libby's first months of life, and she can't sell until the truth is uncovered.
A newspaper article records how the house became infamous decades ago, when three adults were found dead in what was suspected to be a cult-related suicide pact. Concerned locals reported children living there too, but their identities were unknown and no trace of them remained. These missing children could be the only family Libby has ever known: the question is whether they want to be found.
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides: Stand-Out Thriller that Deserves the Hype
Rating: 5 stars
Theo has just started a new job at The Grove, a psychiatric unit for violent female criminals. Top of the list of new patients he must take on is Alicia. Alicia seemed to have it all - a flourishing career as an artist and a loving husband - until the night she shot him in the head. Since that fateful night, Alicia has refused to speak a word.
Disentangling Alicia's past and the motives for her crime is not going to be easy - especially when The Grove is hiding secrets of its own.
Archive Nostalgia: Brighton Rock by Graham Greene
Rating: 4 stars
Category: Thriller, Crime Fiction
Synopsis: The novel is set in 1930s Brighton, where the holiday amusements sit in stark contrast to a sinister gang underworld. Central to our view of this underworld is Pinkie, a boy of only 17 who orchestrates the killing of rival gang informer Fred.
Little does he know that Fred had befriended the uncompromisingly righteous Ada, who is determined to see justice done. As he commits increasingly violent acts to protect himself and his fragile status, Pinkie is left spiralling further into a state of amorality and despair.
Archive Nostalgia: I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes
I'm bringing back my review of I Am Pilgrim for those of you looking to get stuck into an addictive thriller this summer!
I’m not someone who normally goes for spy thrillers. I find that all too often they can be cliché, predictable and populated with gung-ho, rather arrogant heroes. Nevertheless, after being pestered by my entire family I relented and finally put my stuck-up literary nose into this ‘spy novel’. It turns out that I Am Pilgrim had me eating my words.
The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel
When Lane’s mother commits suicide, she is invited to live with her estranged grandparents and cousin Allegra at Roanoke – their mysterious residence in a suffocating small town. On the surface, the family seems perfect. They are wealthy, rich, beautiful and charismatic. Behind this, Lane discovers a harrowing family history of violent deaths, disappearances and dark secrets. After only one summer, she becomes the only Roanoke girl to escape. However, eleven years later, when her cousin Allegra goes missing, Roanoke’s haunting secrets are clawing her back once more…
The Dry by Jane Harper
Aaron Falk is heading back to his hometown for the funeral of an old friend. Everyone believes the death was suicide, but something doesn’t seem to quite add up. As Falk is drawn deeper into the investigation, he threatens to unearth secrets that have been all but forgotten. Meanwhile, the suspicion that is rife throughout the town starts to point towards him – because all those years ago, Luke was Falk’s alibi for murder…
The Girlfriend by Michelle Frances
Rating: 4 stars
Category: Psychological thriller
Synopsis: Laura is a woman who seems to have it all – a satisfying career, a beautiful house, a loving son about to start medical school. But when her son Daniel brings home Cherry, lower-class yet sharply ambitious, something just doesn’t feel quite right. After an unforgivable lie, both mother and girlfriend find themselves drawn into a dark game of lies and manipulation.
Brighton Rock by Graham Greene
I will begin with a warning. If you are looking for a little light reading then I suggest you look away now, as Brighton Rock is nothing of the sort. It’s dark, it’s heavy, and it’s frankly pretty depressing. However, this does nothing to dull the fact it is also compelling literature that manages to unsettle, frighten and fascinate all at the same time.
I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes
Now I’m not someone who normally goes for spy thrillers. I find that all too often they can be cliché, predictable and populated with gung-ho, rather arrogant heroes. Nevertheless, after being pestered by my entire family I relented and finally put my stuck-up literary nose into this ‘spy novel’. It turns out that I Am Pilgrim had me eating my words.