Author: J. P. Delaney Title: The Girl Before Series: - Published: January 24th 2017 Format: print Pages: 382 Goodreads
The more I dive into the mystery/thriller genre the more interesting books I discover. I’ve been hearing a lot of great reviews and even the woman at the bookstore told me this book is great while I was buying it. Therefore, I had pretty high expectations and I have to say, I was not disappointed.
The premise itself is very intriguing, two girls living in the same house whose owner is a bit of a lunatic and has a whole lot of rules. At the begining I felt like I was reading the same story twice as we followed both girls who experienced more or less the same thing, just at different time periods. Thankfully, Emma’s and Jane’s voices became distinct before I got bored with reading the same thing two times. Unfortunately, Jane ended up being a quite boring character and I enjoyed Emma’s POV a lot more as the story progressed. Emma was an obnoxious but very complex character and I was really curious to find out what went down and who killed her. Jane, on the other hand, was just too whiny and I couldn’t care less what would happen to her.
The most interesting character in the whole story was definitely Edward, the crazy arhitect who designed this super modern and minimalistic house and set a ton of rules for people living in the house. Throughout the most of the book he is portrayed as a bad guy and someone who is not to be trusted. Yeah, he’s a control-freak, he suffers from severe OCD and he does have an obsession with a specific type of women but all those thing make him the most complex character and it was a ton of fun getting to know him. He has even more issues than Emma!
Now, this book is marketed as a thriller but what noone tells you is that this is also heavily focused on romance. Delaney saw which types of books were selling the best right now and tried to make one book that would feature a little bit of everything. Take the thriller aspect with the crazy female whose death we are investigating (Gone Girl) and mix it up with a romance with a dominant male (50 Shades of Gray) and there you have it = The Girl Before. There were two ways this book could’ve turned out – very good or very bad – and in my opinion it was the former. Surprisingly good, actually.
My biggest problem with this book was definitely the ending. It’s not that it was bad but I expected something that would blow me away, something that would fit with the rest of the book. Instead, we got and underwhelming conclusion that didn’t completely make sense. Okay, the reveal of Emma’s murderer was great but everything that followed and the overall wrap up of the story was just lacking. It could be just me and I may have hoped something else would happen but to me, the end was lukewarm and disappointing.
Overall, The Girl Before is a quick and fun read and I would still highly recommend it. It has it’s flaws and it’s definitely not the best book out there but it’s pretty good nontheless. Give it a try if it sounds like something you might enjoy.