Blurb: Finding a mysterious novel at her bedside plunges documentary filmmaker Catherine Ravenscroft into a living nightmare. Though ostensibly fiction, The Perfect Stranger recreates in vivid, unmistakable detail the terrible day Catherine became hostage to a dark secret, a secret that only one other person knew–and that person is dead.
Now that the past is catching up with her, Catherine’s world is falling apart. Her only hope is to confront what really happened on that awful day even if the shocking truth might destroy her.
Review: The premise for Disclaimer is an instant spine-chiller. What if you realised the book you’re reading is actually about you? For Catherine, it is. The book that’s mysteriously landed in her home is the retelling of a terrible day, back when Catherine’s son, Nicholas was a child, whilst they were on holiday. Catherine knows the truth about what happened that day and so does only one other person – and that person is dead. When her husband, Robert, reads the book and finds out what happened, Catherine’s life turns into turmoil. But there’s always two sides to every story.
Disclaimer is incredibly atmospheric; the writing style is fantastic, easily flowing and I loved the two point’s of views alternating throughout the story to give you, essentially the two different sides of the same coin; Catherine and Stephen. You find out gradually throughout the book how these two who are seemingly strangers to one another actually have a much more sinister connection. The suspension factor in this book was ten out of ten and just when you think there’s nothing left to learn, bam! The story completely turns on itself.
One other thing I must compliment the author on is how she manages to lead you into forming opinions of the characters, opinions which inevitably change throughout the novel as more and more is revealed. I can think of very few books where the labels you put the charatcers under, ‘Good’, ‘Bad’, ‘Evil’ are so so wrong by the end of the book!
However, having said all that, the big, ‘revelation’ and secret hidden in the book didn’t wow me. It was tragic, yes. But after all the intense build up, I was expecting something earth-shattering. There was just something missing, which I can’t quite seem to put my finger on. But that’s not to say I didn’t enjoy the book as a whole, I very much did and it was extremely compelling but there was a certain essence that was missing, for me to give it a full 5 stars. I was so pulled in by the whole idea of this book but at around the halfway mark, I began to question why the book was even relevant in the story.
So… Disclaimer… Not exactly what I was expecting; I can completely understand why it’s had all the hype is has and why it’s received so many 5 stars. It was intriguing, compelling but didn’t pack the punch I hoped for. Still, an extremely well thought-out and captivating novel with a fantastic writing style.