Release date: March 22, 2018
Publisher: Avon Books
Genre: Psychological Thriller
When Lou Wandsworth ran away to France with her teacher Mike Hughes, she thought he was the love of her life. But Mike wasn’t what he seemed and he left her life in pieces.
Now 32, Lou discovers that he is involved with teenager Chloe Meadows. Determined to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself, she returns home to confront him for the damage he’s caused.
But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as Lou tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that she could once again become his prey…
The million copy Sunday Times bestseller returns with a taut, compelling psychological thriller that will have you glued to the edge of your seat.
Happy publication day to C. L. Taylor, I’m thrilled to be helping to kick off her blog tour today! I have my thoughts about the book to share, but first I have an extract.
I hate surprises. So much so that when Ben rang me at work on Monday and told me to keep the weekend free because he was going to surprise me, I almost ended the call. Instead I pretended to be thrilled.
‘You okay?’ he asks now. ‘You don’t get travel-sick do you?’
If I look pale it’s got nothing to do with the fact that we are rocketing down the A2 in Ben’s battered VW Golf.
‘I’m fine,’ I say. ‘But I wish you’d tell me where we’re going.’
He taps a finger against the side of his nose and smiles. ‘You’ll find out soon enough.’
Ben was never meant to be more than a one-night stand. I figured he’d be straight out of my bed, and my life, the moment our sweat-slicked bodies cooled. But he stuck around. He stayed all night and then insisted on taking me out for breakfast the next day. I said yes, partly because it was less awkward than saying no. Mostly because I was hungry and I didn’t have any food in the house. We ended up staying in the café for over two hours. I learnt that he was a self-employed graphic artist, he’d never been to a gig, and his dad was a massive hypochondriac. He learnt that I was an only child, a project manager for an eLearning company and that my dad had recently died. Ben immediately reached across the table, squeezed my hand and said how sorry he was. When he asked if we’d been close I changed the subject.
I need to go back there at some point, to my childhood home in the rolling green Worcestershire countryside, to clear and clean the farmhouse and put it on the market, but there’s a good reason why I haven’t been back in eighteen years.
Are you intrigued?! You should be, this was a fantastic read!
From the moment I started The Fear I was totally hooked, Taylor drew me into a dark and tangled web and didn’t let me go until the final chapter. Lou was groomed by a much older man when she was a young teenager and now it’s many years later and she’s still struggling to get past it. Grooming is one of those words that sends a chill down my spine as a parent to two girls, the manipulation and abuse associated with it put the fear into me, what an aptly titled book.
This is told from multiple perspectives, Lou both in 2007 and via her diary entries when she was fourteen, then you hear from Chloe, the teenager who Lou fears is being used in the same way that she was and finally, Wendy. You’re never quite sure exactly what Wendy’s angle is or how she fits into the story, but when it’s revealed I did one of those, oohhh I see what you did there moments, super clever! This is extremely fast paced and sharply written, it begs to be read in one sitting as there’s so much tension and anticipation about what will happen next, both in the flashbacks and the 2007 storyline.
I don’t want to discuss the plot much more, just know that if you’re a psychological thriller fan, this is a must read. The characterization is just as strong as the writing and the story is gripping, I really couldn’t ask for more!
The Fear in three words: Absorbing, Shocking and Thrilling.
Overall rating: 5/5
Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.