Before She Knew Him
From Peter Swanson, author of The Kind Worth Killing and All the Beautiful Lies, comes a novel as brilliant, dark, coruscating and surprising as Patricia Highsmith and Ira Levin at their very best
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A Sunday Times and Observer Thriller of the Month, from the bestselling author of The Kind Worth Killing and All the Beautiful Lies
‘They had a secret, the two of them, and there was no better way to start a friendship than with a secret…’
When Hen and Lloyd move into their new house in West Dartford, Mass., they’re relieved to meet, at their first block party, the only other seemingly-childless couple in their neighborhood, Matthew and Mira Dolamore. Turns out they live in the Dutch Colonial immediately next door.
When they’re invited over for dinner, however, things take a sinister turn when Hen thinks she sees something suspicious in Matthew’s study. Could this charming, mild-mannered College Professor really be hiding a dark secret, one that only Hen, whose been battling her own problems with depression and medication, could know about? Lloyd certainly doesn’t seem to believe her, and so, forced together, Hen and Matthew start to form an unlikely bond. But who, if anyone, is really in danger?
From its deeply unsettling opening, Peter Swanson, the master of contemporary domestic thrillers, fashions a novel as brilliant, dark, coruscating and surprising as Patricia Highsmith and Ira Levin at their very best.
Deliciously good – dry, intelligent, perfectly paced, there is more than a touch of the Barbara Vines ... This is Swanson’s best thriller yet.
The narrative trickery is bold but reined-in, and the action is... evoked in John Updike-like loving detail. Here, as in all his best work, Swanson is equally beguiling when conjuring up the mind of a sociopath and the middleclass Eden that harbours him.
Spot on... Fans of his previous bestsellers won't be disappointed.
So smart and exciting... Brian de Palma, or Hitchcock, were he still alive, would kill for the film rights.
Will keep you gripped through every elegant twist and turn.
Compelling, creepy, and psychologically astute, this is stylish thriller writing at its very best.
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