Close To Me – Amanda Reynolds
Published: 05 Dec 2017 by Quercus Books
Swathi’s Rating: 4/5
Verdict: A claustrophobic domestic thriller which has every element for a Blockbuster movie!
I’m so thrilled to share my review on this fantastic Novel that I’ve just completed reading over the weekend. It’s a perfect treat for those who love Domestic thrillers. But more than that, it has a high psychological effect on the readers that could keep you awake for days! Read along and enjoy the Blurb. I have some exciting Interview with the author herself where she shares her writing experience and gives a grander picture of this book for her readers. Click here to read the exclusive Interview!
Jo Harding can’t remember the last year of her life.
And her husband wants to keep it that way.
When Jo falls down the stairs at home, she wakes up in the hospital with partial amnesia. In fact, she finds that she’s lost an entire year of memories. She can’t remember what she did, or anything that happened the night she fell. A lot can happen in a year, and she begins to discover that she may have been leading a double life before the accident.
As she questions the details of the past year and why her family wants her to stay in the dark, she begins to realize she might not be as good a wife and mother as she might have hoped . . .
Like the Plot? Get your copy here: Amazon
Amanda Reynolds has taught creative writing for the last four years in Gloucestershire as a tutor for Cotswold Creating Writing, and is a member of the National Association of Writers in Education.
Amanda’s debut novel CLOSE TO ME will be published in April 2017 by Wildfire Books (Headline) as their very first fiction title. It is published in the United States by Quercus in Fall 2017, as well as translated into multiple languages. She currently lives in the Cotswolds with her husband, two children, and two very furry retrievers.
Click here to read an Interview with Amanda.
What to expect: Expect a nail biting thrilling experience which is very relatable and prone to happen to anyone you know, all making it more intriguing! The characters are real and brutally honest. They display the kindness and evil that can be seen in a everyday person. Amanda’s writing keeps the story going in a steady pace, with deeper descriptions and clear cut narrations.
What is new:The story revolves between two timelines: Jo’s present days after her fall, where she struggles to remember her past year. Another timeline shows Jo’s past year rewinding from the month of her fall. Every chapter is accurately named, so that the reader gets a clear picture of what is happening. Reading through the timelines, I realised that everyone (including the readers) except Jo Harding knows what is happening to her, and it only makes her character more and more vulnerable.
Everytime I read a domestic noir, there is a dysfunctional family or a member or family involved, which makes me thankful to my wonderful family. This is one reason why I love domestic stories, they are relatable and reminds family values in one way or another. This story of Jo and her family could happen to anyone. Anyone, any women could fall a prey to stronger men/women in the society facing deceit, fear, betrayal and hurt. It takes a strong soul to stand up and face the world. Thanks to the author for choosing such a sensitive subject.
There is also a self help drop-in center where Jo volunteers to seek those who needed help. She creates resume for jobless, homeless people, and counsels them for a better living. The more time she spends in the center, the more she seems to escape her own shadowed life. A life where she’s a trophy wife to a cheating, violent husband, and mother to two different grownups who doesn’t want anything to do with her anymore.
What is missing: I had a slow start with the first few chapters of the book. It was too early to understand the characters mainly, Jo’s husband and her kids. But once the pace is up, there is no looking back! One thing I craved is to picture more of their locality, her neighborhood, her friends apart from the area; although there is a perfect description of their Barn uphill, and every other place they visit.
Final Thoughts: If you’re a lover of domestic thrillers, this book should be on your list! This is a GONE GIRL styled script, which would be blockbuster if made into a movie. Also, this is binge read you could enjoy over the weekend.
Many thanks to the publisher for the early copy. All opinions are honest and they are mine.
Like the book? I would love to hear your thoughts! Happy reading!!