This review is part of the #TheHouse blog tour.
Title: The House
Author: Simon Lelic
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Source: The publisher
Publisher: Penguin (3rd November 2017, 17th August 2017 in ebook)
The heart-stopping thriller about a husband and wife who are hiding something from each other, and from you…This book won’t let you go until you’ve found out the truth. Perfect for fans of Erin Kelly, Gillian Flynn and Fiona Barton.
Whose story do YOU believe?
Londoners Jack and Syd moved into the house a year ago. It seemed like their dream home: tons of space, the perfect location, and a friendly owner who wanted a young couple to have it.
So when they made a grisly discovery in the attic, Jack and Syd chose to ignore it. That was a mistake.
Because someone has just been murdered outside their back door.
AND NOW THE POLICE ARE WATCHING THEM.
(Blurb taken from Penguin.co.uk)
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4 stars)
THE HOUSE is Simon Lelic’s first venture into the psychological thriller genre. The book is narrated by Londoners Jack and Sydney; a happy couple who, after years of scrimping and saving, managed to buy their first house together. The house seems perfect; everything they wanted to continue their lives properly together for the first time. The only slight downside to their purchase is that the house comes with contents from the previous owner and they have to decide what to do with it. Then Jack discovers something gruesome in the attic, but they decide to ignore it until someone is murdered right outside their back door.
I can honestly say that THE HOUSE is one of the creepiest and disturbing books I’ve read this year! The story just sucks you straight in, and before you know it you’re desperate to discover just what is going on. I will say, before I go any further with this review, that THE HOUSE does deal with some topics that some readers may find triggering – there are mentions of child abuse, and of suicide – but I think Lelic handles them sensitively. I found THE HOUSE to be a delightfully creepy read; a perfect book to curl up with around Hallowe’en.
The narrative of THE HOUSE is shared between Jack and Sydney; I found it really interesting to watch events unfold from their different points of view. The first part of the book is narrated retrospectively, and I think Lelic does a fantastic job of conveying the confusion and chaos of hindsight. I found both Jack and Sydney to be really interesting characters, and I think the dual narration worked well to build up the story. I’m not usually a fan of first person narration, but I found this book really readable and I enjoyed the insight into each character that this form of narration provided.
Plotwise Lelic had, and kept, me guessing from the start. I don’t think at any point in the story did I know, or guess, more than Lelic chose to reveal. This was mainly because of Lelic’s chosen narrative style, but also because there were a lot of twists and turns in the plot as the story unfolded. Lelic slowly pulls you into Jack and Sydney’s worlds, and before you realise it THE HOUSE has become a real page-turner. The ending of the book was, in my opinion, especially well done. Lelic should be proud of his first venture into the psychological thriller, and if that is your genre of choice then I highly recommend that you get hold of a copy of this book.
Meet the author…
Simon Lelic is the author of three previous novels: Rupture (winner of a Betty Trask Award and shortlisted for the John Creasy Debut Dagger), The Facility and The Child Who (longlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger and CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger 2012). The House is his first psychological thriller, inspired by a love of Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King. (taken from Penguin.co.uk)