Post Script: The Hand That Feeds You – A J Rich

Do not deny that urge to adopt a rescue dog!

Cover The Hand That Feeds You

The Hand That Feeds You

A J Rich

Simon & Schuster Aust

Scribner

ISBN: 9781471148576

 

Description:

Morgan’s life seems to be settled – she is completing her thesis on victim psychology and newly engaged to Bennett, a man more possessive than those she has dated in the past, but also more chivalrous and passionate.

 

But she returns from class one day to find Bennett savagely killed, and her dogs – a Great Pyrenees, and two pit bulls she was fostering – circling the body, covered in blood. Everything she holds dear in life is taken away from her in an instant.

 

Devastated and traumatised, Morgan tries to locate Bennett’s parents to tell them about their son’s death. Only then does she begin to discover layer after layer of deceit. Bennett is not the man she thought he was. And she is not the only woman now in immense danger…

 

 

My View:

A great psychological drama.

A J Rice is the pen name of two authors  – Amy Hempel and Jill Ciment, together these two authors have a written a  seamless narrative of manipulation and intrigue; a great psychological  thriller.   But this book is so much more than a suspenseful narrative; the writers manage to pack the book with information on dogs, dog handling, dog refuges, forensic evidences, pathology, university study/clinical psychological studies, psychoanalysis and relationship studies. Irony abounds – the master’s student whose thesis on victim psychology, in particularly identifying what makes a victim is a “victim” herself, self-realisation is a major character in this novel.

 

The opening scenes are mind-blowing: the situation that Morgan discovers when she returns to her flat is so serve it causes a psychotic break, and the event that occurred in her recent past (no spoilers here) is traumatic, violent and demeaning and informs/determines so much of her later behaviours. So much action and intrigue occurs in these first few chapters that the book has effortlessly hooked you in. What occurs thereafter is just a bonus! The only fault I found with this narrative was how quickly the conclusion was presented – it felt rushed and the timing felt out of sync with the rest of the novel.

Be warned after reading this you will feel an uncontrollable compulsion to adopt a dog from a dog rescue centre. Do not deny this urge.

Post Script: The Girl On The Train – Paula Hawkins

The Girl On The Train

The Girl on the Train

Paula Hawkins

Transworld Books

ISBN: 9780857522313

 

Description:

A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people’s lives.

 

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

 

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

 

A compulsively readable, emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller that draws comparisons to Gone Girl, The Silent Wife, or Before I Go to Sleep, this is an electrifying debut embraced by readers across markets and categories.

 

 

My View:

A brilliant expose of addiction, isolation and alcoholism woven neatly into a narrative of manipulation and mystery. The book begins slowly, (personally I would have liked to have seen the tempo increased and a little more tension built into the earlier part of the book), yet despite the slow pace I did enjoy this read and there is a lovely twist or two in this one that you will not see coming. The last few chapters are bursting with action, mystery, violence and suspense.

 

This is a great debut novel and this author is certainly one to look out for.

 

After you have read this book you will never look at a bottle of wine or a gin and tonic the same way again…

 

Have you read this book? What did you think? I think sometimes the hype surrounding a book can be detrimental to your enjoyment of the read – expectations can cause the bar to be unrealistically high. Perhaps you are better of not having heard anything about this book before you pick it up and let the writing speak for itself.