Wednesday 24 March 2021

Greenwich Park - Katherine Faulkner

Helen has it all...

Daniel is the perfect husband.
Rory is the perfect brother.
Serena is the perfect sister-in-law.

And Rachel? Rachel is the perfect nightmare.

When Helen, finally pregnant after years of tragedy, attends her first antenatal class, she is expecting her loving architect husband to arrive soon after, along with her confident, charming brother Rory and his pregnant wife, the effortlessly beautiful Serena. What she is not expecting is Rachel.

Extroverted, brash, unsettling single mother-to-be Rachel, who just wants to be Helen's friend. Who just wants to get know Helen and her friends and her family. Who just wants to know everything about them. Every little secret…

What did I think?

Wow!  What a debut!  Greenwich Park is a very impressive debut from Katherine Faulkner; the writing is so accomplished that I actually had to double check that it was her debut novel.  With secrets, lies and twists galore this is one very addictive thriller that gets under your skin and gestates into a perfect book baby.

After several miscarriages, Helen is pregnant again and the chapters count the weeks of her pregnancy.  I loved this touch; it was both hopeful that the pregnancy would go to term and also suspenseful that something terrible would happen.  You just know that this story is going to end in tears but with a conclusion as breathtaking and explosive as the fireworks at Helen's bonfire party, I could never have guessed the outcome.

I really felt sorry for Helen; she is hoping to attend antenatal class with her husband, brother and pregnant sister-in-law but none of them turn up.  Helen makes friends with Rachel, a single mother-to-be at the class and they seems to bump into each other wherever Helen goes.  Coincidence?  I think not!  Helen is too polite to rebuff Rachel and she is inevitably drawn into Rachel's web like the spider and the fly.  What is Rachel's game and why does she seem so intent on invading Helen's life?  That's quite a hook!

This dark, addictive and mesmerising novel had me completely enthralled from start to finish.  Nothing is as it seems once you scratch the surface of these apparently perfect lives and Rachel isn't the only spider in this stunning web of intrigue and lies.  If this is the quality of her debut, I can't wait to see what Katherine Faulkner writes next.  Greenwich Park is completely unmissable and highly recommended.

I chose to read an ARC provided from the publisher via NetGalley and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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