Tuesday 26 January 2016

Review ~ Behind Closed Doors by B A Paris

11 February 2016

Sometimes a perfect marriage can be a perfect lie

I'd heard a flutter of excitement on social media about Behind Closed Doors and was lucky to be able to pick up an ARC from NetGalley and then I set it aside as I had other books that were ahead of it in my organised reading queue. I use the term 'organised' rather loosely, as I can, and do juggle books around to suit my reading mood.  So, with domestic noir as my reading mood, I bumped Behind Closed Doors up the queue and started to read on a quiet evening when there was nothing remotely decent to watch on any of the hundreds of TV channels that I have access too, and so, with music playing softly in the back ground, I entered the world of Jack and Grace. It says in the blurb that every one knows a couple like them. Well, please God, don't let any couple I know be like them, otherwise I would be very concerned indeed, but I digress...

Jack and Grace are beautiful people. Jack from the offset is described as a George Clooney lookalike which must be said, ticked the right box straight away, and Grace with her slender good looks is composed, sophisticated and every inch the beautiful wife of an accomplished man. As a couple they are always together, in that if you see Jack , you also see Grace and vice versa. They even go to visit Grace's sister, who needs just a little bit of extra care and who is ably looked after in a rather expensive, residential facility. Friends marvel at Jack's ability to anticipate Grace's every whim. They own a sumptuous house, have a kitchen to die for, a place where beautiful meals are prepared to wow dinner guests, and they share wonderful photographs of exotic holidays. Truly,  it would seem that Grace is a very lucky girl indeed.

But this sort of idyllic paradise comes with a high price tag as we are shortly to learn, as slowly, inch by tantalising inch, we are drawn into Grace's world, and that dear reader, is where I leave off what happens next. You really don't need me to outline the story in any more detail…

All I will say with any degree of intelligent observation is ...wow.

I read Behind Closed Doors until my eyes ached with weariness, I didn't notice the CD player stop playing and when I could read no more, I went to bed and dreamed dark dreams that had no basis in reality, but which were very firmly placed in the darkness of an imagination stimulated by really good storytelling.

Picking up the story the following morning and even before my breakfast porridge had time to cool, I had re-entered Jack and Grace's world and, quite simply, read and read and read, until by the time the last word was finished, I was numb with shock, stunned at the power of a writer who had the imagination let this story take flight, and humbled that something so viscerally graphic, would move me to tears.

There are two cliches used often in my book reviewing world...' it was unputdownable' and 'will stay with me long after the last page is turned' ....without any shadow of doubt and reviewing cliches notwithstanding, this really is both unputdownable and memorable and I can't enthuse about it enough....

Best read with .....a very large glass of icy cold white Zinfandel and a gargantuan slice of rich chocolate cake, liberally laced with brandy...

About the author

B A Paris grew up in England but has spent most of her adult life in France. She has worked both in finance and as a teacher and has five daughters. Behind Closed Doors is her first novel.

Follow on Twitter @BAParisAuthor

Behind Closed Doors is available on Amazon UK to pre-order at the ridiculously low price of 99p which is not even the price of a decent daily paper or a cup of coffee...

My thanks to NetGalley and Mira for my review copy of this book.


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