Thank you for stopping by I'm delighted to be sharing my review for The Stranger by Kate Riordan as part of the blog tour today. First of all though let's take a look at the description for the book...
1940, Cornwall, England. Penhallow Hall shelters a handful of Land Girls, sent to the coast to avoid the horrors of London's Blitz. But the beautiful, arrogant Diana Devlin, impatient with the sleepy village and its placid residents, can't resist the temptation to stir up long-buried secrets. When a young woman's body is found lying broken on the shore, the promised safety of the Hall is shattered.
Was it simply a tragic accident, or did mischief end in murder?
What a descriptive way to start a story and it meant I was instantly pulled in, it's the kind of book where you just want to curl up by yourself. That way you can focus completely on the story without any distractions. I have to admit to loving stories that include diary entires as I find them to be such a great tool at adding more personality to a character. In this case Diana's were perfect at revealing her character both the good and the bad. After each one I was already looking forward to reading the next.
There are a few characters to follow within the story but I didn't find this confusing at all as they were all so different yet at the same time almost had this lost and lonely aspect to their personalities. Diana is quite something and not necessarily in a good way especially when she is bored. Rose is chasing her past as she fondly remembers one summer spent in Cornwall. As the story progresses it becomes clear that the characters lives are very tangled indeed and I couldn't wait to see how it would all end.
There is a very atmospheric feel to the plot and I think the setting helps to establish this even more with a feeling that Penhallow Hall has a darker story behind it. The Stranger is a drama that captivated me from the start and had some engaging although not always likeable characters. The mystery aspect was always going to be a positive in my eyes and I loved the way Kate Riordan wove secrets, lies and also the past firmly into the story.
Five stars from me!
With thanks to Jenny Platt at Michael Joseph for my copy. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.
Kate Riordan is a journalist who started out as an editorial assistant at the Guardian, followed by a stint as deputy editor for the Lifestyle section of Time Out. Kate’s first novel, The Girl in the Photograph was published in January 2015 marking an exciting start to her career, followed by her second novel The Shadow Hour. Kate is now a freelance writer and lives in the Cotswolds.
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