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In My House

Alex Hourston

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.

Date Published
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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 . . .

Critic Reviews

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.

Kate Saunders, The Times
Critic Reviews

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!

Julie Myerson
Critic Reviews

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.

Critic Reviews

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.

Critic Reviews

'Unsettling ... with a very persuasive thread of menace.'

Critic Reviews

'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.

Good Housekeeping

After fifteen years writing strategy for advertising agencies, Alex Hourston took a break to go back to university and her first love, books. She completed a Masters in English and started a PhD, but put it aside when the idea for this novel surfaced. Alex lives outside Brighton with her family. She is working on her second novel, an exploration…

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