Review: The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware


Release date: May 29, 2018

Publisher: Scout Press

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of In a Dark, Dark Wood, The Woman in Cabin 10, and The Lying Game comes Ruth Ware’s highly anticipated fourth novel.

On a day that begins like any other, Hal receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a substantial inheritance. She realizes very quickly that the letter was sent to the wrong person—but also that the cold-reading skills she’s honed as a tarot card reader might help her claim the money.

Soon, Hal finds herself at the funeral of the deceased…where it dawns on her that there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the center of it.

Full of spellbinding menace and told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, this is an unputdownable thriller from the Agatha Christie of our time.


Ware’s debut, In A Dark, Dark Wood was one of my favorite reads of 2015 and then The Woman in Cabin 10 was another solid read for me, although I wasn’t as obsessed with it as IADDW. When The Lying Game was released last summer I grabbed a copy but I still haven’t read it. I saw SO many mixed reviews that I just skipped it for now, but all of that to say, as soon as I read the blurb of this one I was excited! It sounded like it would have some of the same elements that I enjoyed in IADDW and it definitely did, and while Ware’s debut remains my favorite of her books, this is definitely a close second.

Ware has an amazing talent for writing in an atmospheric way that really pulls the reader into the worlds she creates. When Hal enters the world of the Westaway family there was such a dark intensity, such a strong feeling of menace and danger lurking in the family home, it was creepy and strangely intoxicating. Hal is a tarot card reader and this added a mystical tone as well that when combined with the setting created that perfect storm of scary and fascinating.

Ware is really such a talented writer, her skill is even more apparent when I realized that some parts of this dragged a little for me but I was still entirely hooked. That doesn’t happen often, if things begin to drag I’m usually forcing myself to read, and the wait was most certainly worth it this time, when all was revealed I was shocked and totally satisfied! I also really enjoyed Hal as a character which makes it even better, I’ve had issues with Ware’s previous protagonists and this time I was behind Hal one hundred percent.

The Death of Mrs Westaway in three words: Ominous, Unsettling and Creepy.

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

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