By Elizabeth Haynes
Published by Myriad Edition (E-book - 28 July 2016; Paperback - October 2016)
Sarah Carpenter lives in an isolated farmhouse in North Yorkshire and for the first time, after the death of her husband some years ago and her children, Louis and Kitty, leaving for university, she’s living alone. But she doesn’t consider herself lonely. She has two dogs, a wide network of friends and the support of her best friend, Sophie.
When an old acquaintance, Aiden Beck, needs somewhere to stay for a while, Sarah’s cottage seems ideal; and renewing her relationship with Aiden gives her a reason to smile again. It’s supposed to be temporary, but not everyone is comfortable with the arrangement: her children are wary of his motives, and Will Brewer, an old friend of her son’s, seems to have taken it upon himself to check up on Sarah at every opportunity. Even Sophie has grown remote and distant.
After Sophie disappears, it’s clear she hasn’t been entirely honest with anyone, including Will, who seems more concerned for Sarah’s safety than anyone else. As the weather closes in, events take a dramatic turn and Kitty too goes missing. Suddenly Sarah finds herself in terrible danger, unsure of who she can still trust.
Elizabeth Haynes is a very versatile author, from her chilling psychological thrillers to her realistic gripping police procedural series. With Never Alone, she's returned back to her roots. And in doing so, she has written yet another stunning novel that I couldn't put down.
I felt like I was reading a masterclass in chilling psychological thrillers. From its small cast of main believable characters to the creepy and highly atmospheric setting. Her stunning descriptions of the claustrophobic North Yorkshire landscape added to the tension of the tightly woven plot.
Each page is filled with emotion - fear, sorrow, anxiety, hopelessness, joy and more. And I could feel every one of them as I read - highly descriptive writing, yet no word was superfluous or out of place.
Never Alone is an incredibly unsettling read. It's spine tingling and dark, with a sense of unease running throughout the book. It kept me guessing all the way through, as the tension built up to a dramatic conclusion. Yet another book that I'll be recommending widely.
I received an Advance Reader Copy in exchange for an honest review.
Read my Q&A with Elizabeth Haynes here.