#BookReview: THE LYING ROOM by Nicci French @FrenchNicci @simonschusterUK @jessbarratt88

The_Lying_RoomPublication: 3rd October 2019 – Simon & Schuster UK

A trusted colleague and friend. A mother. A wife. Neve Connolly is all these things.

Neve has also made mistakes; some small, some unconsciously done, some large, some deliberate. She is only human after all.

But now one mistake is spiralling out of control. Without ever meaning to do so, Neve has brought those around her into immense danger.

She can’t tell the truth without risking her marriage. So just how far is she prepared to go to protect those she loves?

A liar. A cheat. A threat. Neve Connolly is all these things. Is she also a murderer?

**********

A few seconds. That’s how long it takes to Neve Connolly, the protagonist of the twisty new novel by Nicci French, to make a decision that could ruin her life. When Neve finds her boss Saul dead, murdered, inside his central London flat she decides not to call the police. Instead, she cleans the place better than a professional housekeeper, removing all traces of her ever being there. Why? Although you probably figured it out why Neve acts like this, her secret is not the most important part. By not calling the police Neve sets in motions a series of events that have consequences on her and her loved ones.

Who is Neve Connolly? In her late forties, she is a wife, a worried and caring mother, a good friend, the person everyone likes and turns to when in need of advice and comfort or to spill their secrets. On the outside, she looks like everyone else, living a fairly normal life – although she stays up at night worrying about her teenage daughter, Mabel -, however, she is carrying a secret that could destroy her and, as she keeps telling lies to everyone, things become more difficult as her house fills with old friends and a persistent police detective who likes to turn up unannounced at her door.

The suspense is high. Always. The author (or I should say authors as Nicci French is the pseudonym for Nicci Gerrard and Sean French) brings the reader right inside Neve’s mind and, thanks to detailed descriptions and a wonderful writing-style, you can feel her anxiety, her guilt, her pain, her fear, and her remorse. Like Neve, I felt a sense of dread every time the police detective turned up or every time the truth risked to come to light. I loved the complexity of both the plot and the characters. The characters are very well-developed and I never knew what to expect from any of them. Neve feels realistic. She is flawed and she makes mistakes. There were times when I didn’t like her and I wanted to shook her and tell her “what are you doing???”. And there were times when I cheered her on and I read anxiously while she protected her family and tried to find a killer.

The Lying Room is a terrific, addictive, tense psychological thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat from the first to the last page and I highly recommend!

Thank you so much Jess and Simon & Schuster UK for providing me with a proof copy of this brilliant novel.

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