In My House
This unsettling debut novel tells the story of an unlikely friendship between two very different women, for readers of THE WOMAN UPSTAIRS and NOTES ON A SCANDAL.
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Maggie lives a life of careful routines and measured pleasures. But everything changes when, walking through Gatwick airport, she is approached by a young woman who whispers a single word: ‘Help.’
Maggie’s actions save Anja from her brutal trafficker. However, when the story runs in a newspaper, Maggie is panicked by the publicity and the strange phone calls she begins to receive. Then Anja makes contact, and quickly insinuates herself into Maggie’s ordered life . . .
This stunningly accomplished first novel whips along like a thriller, and presents the reader with one more dilemma after another ... A must for the intelligent book group.
The most original, well-observed and well-sustained first novel I've read in a long time. Alex Hourston has a really cool, unnerving way with words. It's crammed full of small, terrifyingly honest details which you feel ought to be in novels but rarely are. I loved it!
Involving and original ... Hourston resolutely avoids the predictable, skilfully throwing the reader off-balance and creating a compelling sense of unease that shimmers unsettlingly beneath the ordinary lives she explores ... a strikingly promising debut. Caustically perceptive, wryly funny, occasionally devastatingly tender, Maggie Benson is a terrific protagonist; like all the most satisfactory characters in fiction, she is both infuriatingly contradictory and entirely plausible.
What would you do if you were in a toilet queue at Gatwick and someone mouthed the word, 'help'? So starts Hourston's intriguing debut novel before grabbing your hand and running headlong to its unsettling finale.
'Unsettling ... with a very persuasive thread of menace.'
'An unsettling story about the friendship between a lonely older woman and an Albanian teenage girl she rescues from a trafficker at Gatwick airport. So accomplished, it's hard to believe this is Alex Hourston's first novel.
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