Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Strangers by C.L. Taylor! My thanks to Sanjana at Avon for the invitation to join and for the review copy.
Author : C.L. Taylor
Title : Strangers
Pages : 352
Publisher : Avon UK
Publication date : April 2, 2020
| ABOUT THE BOOK |
Ursula, Gareth and Alice have never met before.
Ursula thinks she killed the love of her life.
Gareth’s been receiving strange postcards.
And Alice is being stalked.
None of them are used to relying on others – but when the three strangers’ lives unexpectedly collide, there’s only one thing for it: they have to stick together. Otherwise, one of them will die.
Three strangers, two secrets, one terrifying evening.
| MY THOUGHTS |
Strangers is centred around three characters, three strangers who have never met. It seems rather obvious fate will bring these three characters together at some point but how?
Alice manages a fashion store at the local mall. Encouraged by her daughter, she dips her toes into the murky world of online dating. But her first date doesn’t exactly go well. Bit of an understatement there. Her date sets into motion a whole slew of intriguing events, yet there was something about her that put me off. I just couldn’t warm to her at all.
Gareth is a security guard at that same mall. He still lives with his mum, who suffers from dementia. Looking after her and dealing with his job is proving to be a tough balancing act, especially when it looks like someone from their past might be looking for a way back into their lives. Gareth is an easy character to sympathise with. His life didn’t exactly pan out the way he expected it to and he’s desperately lonely.
And then there’s Ursula. She is by far the more interesting of the three. Due to an addiction, she’s forced out of her friend’s home. With little money to her name, beggars can’t be choosers and she ends up in quite a desperate situation. Ursula is a bit of a mystery and the more complex of the three characters. You can’t help but feel there is more to discover about her.
Strangers is very much a character driven psychological suspense story. There is a rather slow build up and with each of these characters getting their own chapters, it allows the reader to get a really good feel for them as they deal with all the dramas life can throw at us. All three are amazingly well fleshed out and realistic, as are the issues they are confronted with. There’s an incredibly wide range of those too: from the impact of social media to mental health issues, to domestic abuse, to grief, guilt and loneliness … to name a few. Some are relatable, most if not all are thought-provoking.
The reader knows from the prologue someone has died. But who, how and why? How are these three strangers connected? Obviously that’s for you to find out but I couldn’t for the life of me figure it out. Strangers is somewhat a story of two halves. It’s a slow burner for sure but at some point, the pace changes and the tension starts to build up. And when things start to fall into place, you realise the author plotted this story quite cleverly. I have no doubt fans of C.L. Taylor will enjoy this suspenseful story.
Strangers is available to buy!
| ABOUT THE AUTHOR |
C.L. Taylor is a Sunday Times bestselling author. Her psychological thrillers have sold over a million copies in the UK alone, been translated into over twenty languages, and optioned for television. Her 2019 novel, Sleep, was a Richard and Judy pick.
C.L. Taylor lives in Bristol with her partner and son.