Neve Connolly – a put upon wife and mother whose affair with her boss stands her life on its head when she finds him murdered. But who did it?
Neve is the central character of this psychological thriller – she’s on every page, with the story told entirely through her actions and reactions. That’s a lot for one character to carry, and unfortunately for me, she doesn’t carry it off. When we’re not being deluged with the details of what she buys at the local deli or what she puts in the kids packed lunches, there’s and endless litany of how tired she is and how confused she finds it all.
Crucially, there’s almost no depth to her relationship with the other characters in the book, one of whom has to be her lover’s killer. Family and friends are all briefly positioned as possibly being responsible, but the case for each is so shallow that the red herrings barely register as minnows. DCI Hitching, investigating the murder is one of the few characters that had any depth but even he fizzles out, undermined at the final reveal by another one dimensional police officer how appears out of nowhere.
When Neve throws off her bleary-eyed exhaustion to solve the mystery, it’s so sudden and implausible any sense of relief was displaced by disbelief. Was I kept guessing until the last page? Yes – but not in a good way.
Length of Read:Medium
Might appeal to people who enjoyed…
Mark Billingham, Stuart McBride
One thing you’ve learned
Nicci French is the writing name for Nicci Gerrard and Sean French.