“Following a brutal attack by her ex-boyfriend, Kate Priddy makes an uncharacteristically bold decision after her cousin, Corbin Dell, suggests a temporary apartment swap – and she moves from London to Boston.
But soon after her arrival Kate makes a shocking discovery: Corbin’s next-door neighbour, a young woman named Audrey Marshall, has been murdered. When the police begin asking questions about Corbin’s relationship with Audrey, and his neighbours come forward with their own suspicions, a shaken Kate has few answers, and many questions of her own.
Jetlagged and emotionally unstable, her imagination playing out her every fear, Kate can barely trust herself. so how can she trust any of the strangers she’s just met?”
So the first thing you need to know is that I love (and I mean LOVE) Peter Swanson’s The Kind Worth Killing. (No, really, I LOVE it!) It’s a book I will always recommend. It’s the book that I felt deserved all the hype Paula Hawkins’s The Girl on the Train received (The Kind Worth Killing is, in my opinion, far superior). So if, in the future, you read another of my reviews (no matter what the book) and I say, ‘this book had a lot to live up to’ then please think about Her Every Fear. Because of all the books in all the world, this is the one I have been anticipating the most. This is the one that has the most to live up to.
I guess the question is, how did it fare in comparison? It’s a great book and I thoroughly enjoyed it…but it didn’t move me in the way A Kind Worth Killing did. I think it’s time for me to shut up about A Kind Worth Killing (if you haven’t read it, BUY IT – here’s a helpful link) and tell you more about my Her Every Fear experience.
I immediately liked the main protagonist, Kate Priddy. Kate, because of a traumatic experience several years earlier, sees the worst situation in absolutely everything. She’s nervy, anxious and scared. As you can imagine, this stops her from living her life to the full. So when her American cousin suggests a 6 month house exchange so he can work in London, Kate is shocked to find herself accepting and on a plane to Boston. Her new apartment is a the opposite of what she has left behind and she finds herself starting to relax. That is until her new next door neighbour’s mutilated body is discovered, mere hours after Kate’s arrival. Meanwhile, Kate’s handsome cousin Corbin is settling into London life. London holds some dear memories for him; particularly his love affair with mysterious Claire. Before long the police are asking Kate questions she can’t answer and Corbin’s flat is searched, time and time again. Were Corbin and the neighbour involved? He’s denied it, but is he telling the truth? And what other secrets is Corbin hiding…?
There were moments whilst reading Her Every Fear that I had goosebumps. Peter Swanson’s ability to build the suspense in his novels is breathtaking. And for me, he is a master of his craft. As I mentioned before, I loved Kate and saw a little of myself in her. She’s such a likeable character. I know Her Every Fear is a psychological thriller, but I really didn’t want anything bad to happen to her (normally I’m desperate for the bad stuff to happen)! It was however interesting to see how this somewhat neurotic character coped with the reality of being in these awful situations.
Peter Swanson shows at times an incredible ability to make you dislike one of his characters, only to reveal their shocking backstory and make you completely change your mind. There were several occurrences where I had made my mind up about a character, only for Swanson to throw a twist into the story and for me to question my original verdict.
The story was fascinating and I enjoyed seeing how the loose ends tied together. I particularly loved the closing chapters which were intense and shocking. I want to say so much more at this point but by doing so I’d be giving spoilers away, which I try to avoid doing at all costs. So I will say that I finished reading this book last week but I can still picture that final scene as if it were real.
Would I recommend this book? Of course I would! Peter Swanson is officially one of my favourite authors and although this isn’t quite up to A Kind Worth Killing it is still a superbly written, dark tale which I enjoyed and would recommend without hesitation.
Four and a half stars out of five.
I chose to read and review an eARC of Her Every Fear. Many thanks to Faber & Faber and NetGalley for providing me with a copy. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.
Her Ever Fear by Peter Swanson was published in the UK by Faber & Faber on 10th January 2017 and is available in hardcover, eBook and audio formats (with the paperback to follow later this year) | amazon.co.uk | amazon.com | Waterstones | Goodreads |
Peter Swanson’s debut novel, The Girl With a Clock for a Heart (2014), was described by Dennis Lehane as ‘a twisty, sexy, electric thrill ride’ and was nominated for the LA Times book award. His follow up The Kind Worth Killing (2015), a Richard and Judy pick, was shortlisted for the Ian Fleming Silver Dagger, was named the iBook stores Thriller of the Year and was a top ten paperback bestseller. He lives with his wife and cat in Somerville, Massachusetts. His third novel, Her Every Fear, will be published in early 2016.