Friday, 21 July 2017

The House by Simon Lelic

Book Review

The House by Simon Lelic - Reading, Writing, Booking

"This thing I've planned for so carefully; it has all gone drastically, horribly wrong."

The House will be released on 17th August. It is published by Penguin and written by Simon Lelic.

In my last post I reviewed The Upstairs Room which has a very similar premise to The House by Simon Lelic. Both focus on a couple who move into a seemingly too good to be true house with unsettling results. While I enjoyed reading The Upstairs Room more, I did like The House too and found it a well-plotted thriller that kept me turning the pages.


What if your perfect home turned out to be the scene of the perfect crime?

Londoners Jack and Syd moved into the house a year ago. It seemed like their dream home: tons of space, the perfect location, and a friendly owner who wanted a young couple to have it.

So when they made a grisly discovery in the attic, Jack and Syd chose to ignore it. That was a mistake.

Because someone has just been murdered. Right outside their back door.

And now the police are watching them...

The House is one of those books that I enjoyed and read quickly, but that hasn't stayed with me afterwards. I only read it a couple of weeks ago and I've already forgotten a lot of what happened (don't worry, I made notes). This may be because I read a lot, but some books stay with me and some don't. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. The House is a great thriller, very twisty, and tackles some dark subjects, but I was happy to let it goo afterwards.

That's not to say that The House isn't disturbing, because it is, and it deals with some difficult subjects, such as abuse and some parts were difficult to read. Lelic also tackles them with a good balance, unsettling the reader but not including unnecessary shocks.
This is a well written book and a good read but it didn't have that extra something that makes it a favourite.

I did enjoy trying to guess some of the twists, which I found difficult. Anyone who likes a knotty thriller will enjoy The House. Lelic is good at dropping hints throughout the narrative too, which keep you interested without giving away too much.

It also focuses on familial relationships and is definitely a domestic thriller, which Lelic does well, weaving feelings and emotions throughout the script.

There is a prevailing creepiness throughout The House. It's not something supernatural, like The Upstairs Room, but an undercurrent of something rotten and unsettling, which gradually becomes revealed.

The House is written from the interchanging view points of Jack and Syd, who are also writing too each other in a way. At first I wasn't sure about this as it felt a bit contrived, but as the narrative moved on it started to feel more natural.

Mainly I enjoyed The House but one let down for me was a rather cheesy ending. I won't go into details but just the last line almost takes away from the rest of the novel.

Ultimately, The House is a good read and will appeal to fans of well-plotted thrillers.

My Rating: 3.5/5 (rounded up to 4 for Goodreads etc)

I received a copy of The House via NetGalley in return for an honest review. My thanks to the author and publisher.

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