Available in ebook, audio, hardback (2 April 2020) | paperback (1 October 2020)
Source: Purchased copy
ABOUT THE BOOK
Ursula, Gareth and Alice have never met before.
Ursula thinks she killed the love of her life.
Gareth’s been receiving strange postcards.
And Alice is being stalked.
None of them are used to relying on others – but when the three strangers’ lives unexpectedly collide, there’s only one thing for it: they have to stick together. Otherwise, one of them will die.
Three strangers, two secrets, one terrifying evening.
Strangers begins with 3 people standing around a dead body. Who, what and why we won’t know until later but this prologue definitely sets the scene for an intriguing read.
Alice is the first character we meet. She is the manager of a fashion store in a shopping mall, ‘the Meads’. Alice, divorced, feeling depressed and lonely and so encouraged by her teenage daughter, is dipping her toe into the world of online dating. It’s fair to say her first date certainly doesn’t go as planned! Poor Alice! As a character, sadly I liked her the least. I found her annoying and a bit clingy but I did feel sympathy for her predicament.
Security guard Gareth lives with his mother who has dementia. Trying to look after his mum, and hold down his job is proving testing, even more so when problems from all quarters land in his lap.
Ursula is probably the most complex of the three main characters. She has an addiction which has cost her friends and a home and she is now in a desperate place. Initially I couldn’t understand why she appeared to keep pressing the self-destruct button and it was only when I knew more about her, that I could empathise.
All three characters have their own dramas to deal with; we see their weaknesses but they also have another side too – compassion and kindness and this was certainly the case for a couple of them. Running alongside these stories is a separate story strand – told by a series of Tweets with the usual online speculation.
With the story touching on issues such as loneliness, grief and domestic abuse, this is very much a character led thriller with a few surprises thrown in. It may be a bit of a slow burner to start, but then the pace changes and everything begins in fall into place when the connections become clearer and the story heads to a dramatic conclusion.
Strangers is an absorbing and suspenseful read which I very much enjoyed. The author certainly knows how to bring her characters alive and these were all realistic with flaws and strengths.
My thanks to Sanjana of Avon for the tour invitation. You can follow this mega tour below.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
C.L. Taylor is a Sunday Times bestselling author. Her psychological thrillers have sold over a million copies in the UK alone, been translated into over twenty languages, and optioned for television. Her 2019 novel, Sleep, was a Richard and Judy pick. C.L. Taylor lives in Bristol with her partner and son.