Jane stumbles on the rental opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to live in a beautiful ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect, on condition she abides by a long list of exacting rules. After moving in, she discovers that a previous tenant, Emma, met a mysterious death there – and starts to wonder if her own story will be a re-run of the girl before. As twist after twist catches the reader off guard, Emma’s past and Jane’s present become inexorably entwined in this tense, page-turning portrayal of psychological obsession.
‘The Girl Before’ is a global bestseller and after two late nights sitting up reading, this is absolutely no surprise.
A dark and intense thriller from the start, this story had an immediate sense of doom about it.
The story is written in both the past and present tense and is seen through the narratives of Jane and Emma. Both women who have become tenants in the mysterious One Folgate Street, where they spend their time living by rules and guides which have been imposed the owner of the house. A controlling architect who has had relationships with both women.
The interesting thing is Emma is now dead, having died in the house and this is her story about her life and how she came to die. Whilst Jane is now the new tenant and it seems that history is now repeating itself.
Emma is really unlikable and she’s also a very unreliable narrator which gives the story a really clever twist. She’s a compulsive liar with an addiction for illicit love affairs and really falls for Edward Monkford, a strange, controlling man who has to have everything a certain way or there will be consequences. The present tense is seen through Jane’s eyes, a gentle woman who also falls for Edward’s charms but begins to have suspicions about him when she looks into Emma’s mysterious death.
I adored this book so much. The alternating chapters following both women are fascinating. They are so different in personalities but their circumstances and situations are so similar and this makes for such compelling reading.
This book is one of the best psychological thrillers that I’ve read in the while. It had such a sense of creepiness throughout that it kept me on edge preparing for the next drama. A cleverly written, intriguing and sexy story about lust and obsession, ‘The Girl Before’ is a suspenseful story that gets more thrilling with each page.
You can buy The Girl Before from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.