I have been waiting for this book to come out for a while now. I have read the first chapter somewhere in December 2016 and got excited like crazy about it. I even put the US cover of the book as my background for my tablet (and emailed the author with it haha). I waited and waited (good thing I had other books to read or else I’d die) until it finally came out and I immediately picked it up and read it. There has been a lot of marketing for this book even before it came out with the hashtag #WTFthatending on Twitter which I’m sure everyone has seen. Here’s the thing – whenever books are over-hyped they seem to fail the reader in one way or the other because of their high expectations . I have to say that this book was flipping good and worth the hype.
Behind Her Eyes is the first psychological thriller from Sarah Pinborough which follows two women – Louise and Adele. While reading the book we learn their stories each from their point of views. These women are connected through David – who is Adele’s husband and Louise’s man-from-the-bar and also her new boss. Louise works as a secretary and is a single mom of a sweet boy named Adam. One night she meets David and has a brief tender encounter with him and then he leaves the bar leaving her full of hope that she’s still got it. Louise goes to work and sees David and learns that he’s her new boss. Not much longer after that while dropping her son off to school she bumps into Adele – who she knows now is her boss’ wife. Both end up chatting and continuing their chat over at the restaurant. She begins to get close to both of them – the beautiful and angelic Adele and the good-looking and charming blue-eyed David. As she gets to know them better she uncovers that not everything is what it seems. Why is Adele’s presence fearful and anxious? Why is she saying that David – the charismatic and magnetising David – is the reason behind it?
I have to agree with Annie from TheMisstery that the ending didn’t ‘follow the rules of its genre’ which sort of bothered me a little. The last chapter was a surprise but ended abruptly which left me frustrated hence this rating. What I loved about it was that feel of the book – the first chapter and Pinborough’s story-telling skills pull you in and you just read on. I loved the characters because they were brilliant and had depth to them. I must say that Adele was the most fascinating because she’s nothing like ordinary people and a person can’t relate to her but with Louise it’s a different story because she’s relatable. The plot didn’t feel over-done (except that part) and I found it really easy to read through (even tho Louise annoyed me at times). The way Pinborough created this mystery in both Adele and David and their marriage made me want to dig deeper and find out their secrets along with Louise. There’s no doubt that Pinborough is a great story-teller.
I don’t want to spoil this book by saying anything further except that this is a great book which lovers of psychological thrillers (with a little genre bending) and mystery should definitely check out!
Sarah was the 2009 winner of the British Fantasy Award for Best Short Story and also the 2010 and 2014 winner of the British Fantasy Award for Best Novella, and she has four times been short-listed for Best Novel. She is also a screenwriter who has written for the BBC and has several original television projects in development.
Her next novel, Behind Her Eyes, coming for HarperFiction in the UK and Flatiron in the US (January 2017) has sold in nearly 20 territories worldwide and is a dark thriller about relationships with a kicker of a twist.