He Said, She Said

Written by Erin Kelly

Review written by Sara Townsend

Sara-Jayne Townsend is a published crime and horror writer and likes books in which someone dies horribly. She is founder and Chair Person of the T Party Writers’ Group. http://sarajaynetownsend.weebly.com/


He Said, She Said
Hodder and Stoughton
RRP: £12.99
Released: April 20 2017
HBK

Cornwall, 1999: a young couple, Laura and Kit, are caught up in the thrall of the total eclipse. In the hushed aftermath, Laura stumbles across a couple having sex. He claims it is consensual. She says nothing, but Laura is clear in her mind that’s she’s just witnessed a rape. In the trial that follows, Laura and Kit testify against the accused rapist, Jamie, and Laura offers a hand of friendship to Beth, the victim.

London, 2015: Laura, heavily pregnant with twins, cannot accompany Kit as he sets off to the Faroe isles to see the latest eclipse, but her anxiety is clear. Kit and Laura have changed identities and are in hiding but it’s not Jamie that seems to be the cause of Laura’s anxiety – it’s Beth.

And so the two timelines that tell this story begin to unravel, with the reader wondering what has happened to turn victim into predator? It soon becomes clear that all the characters in this psychological thriller are hiding something. With the story alternating between Laura’s point of view and Kit’s, and between the past timeline and the present one, there’s a disjointed, unnerving feel to the narrative that adds to the reader’s unease, and the discomforting feeling that you might not be able to trust what the narrator is telling you.

Unreliable narrators are of course a staple ingredient in the psychological thriller, as is the oft-boasted twist that you’ll never see coming. There are twists aplenty in this book, and they generally creep up on you completely unawares, hitting you with the force of a baseball in flight. And then, just when you’re recovering from that revelation, another one comes at you from the other direction and floors you again.

What becomes clear early on is that a story which starts out as a ‘his word against hers’ rape case becomes a many-layered, highly complex and utterly compelling read.

This novel is one of the ‘must-reads’ of the year, and will keep you gripped all the way to the explosive ending.



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