When Lou Wandsworth ran away to France with her teacher Mike Hughes, she thought he was the love of her life. But Mike wasn’t what he seemed and he left her life in pieces.
Now 32, Lou discovers that he is involved with teenager Chloe Meadows. Determined to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself, she returns home to confront him for the damage he’s caused.
But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as Lou tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that she could once again become his prey…
What I Thought:
Although I will be reviewing The Fear below, today is also my stop on the blog tour for this suspenseful thriller and I’ve been given a snippet of the book to whet your appetite…
It doesn’t take Chloe long to find her confiscated phone. It’s shoved in her dad’s sock drawer – the same place he hides everything he takes away from his kids. Jamie’s Nintendo 3DS is in there too (swiped on the plane journey when he refused to turn it off for take-off). She snatches her phone up, creeps back out onto the landing and darts into her room. Her heart thuds in her chest as she stands at her bedroom door, listening out in case her dad comes back, then plugs her phone into her charger and turns it on. The Samsung logo swirls on the screen. A second later her apps appear. She holds her breath as she stares at the top left-hand corner of the screen, waiting for the phone to connect to the network and the notifications to appear.
I found The Fear really unsettling – as I had expected it to be – and really well-written. I don’t know why, but I really like reading psychological thrillers where the lead character loses their control and is merely swept along by events, even though they make me very uncomfortable and tend to stay with me. This book was no exception as Lou, although starting out with a plan to confront Mike, very quickly turned back into the groomed 14-year-old that she used to be.
What makes this book so uncomfortable is that Mike is the villain, and yet he is a normal bloke. There’s no indication outside of his dealings with Lou and Chloe to suggest that he is a paedophile, and so when Lou tries to warn people, no-one believes her. I suppose as a society we like to think that we could spot a paedophile a mile away, but this book is a wake up call in that regard!
This is the first book I’ve read by C. L. Taylor, but I was lucky enough to meet her at YALC 2017 and have a signed copy of The Treatment, her first YA book, to read – I’ll definitely be starting on that soon as her writing is superb, conveying domestic drama and suspense in a way that makes it compulsive reading.
This post is part of a blog tour to support the release of The Fear and there are lots of other fab blogs hosting guest content, competitions and extracts, so do check some of them out.
Please note: I was sent a copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions are, as ever, my own.