#ThrowbackThursday: The Woman before Me by Ruth Dugdall #Psychological Fiction

 

 

‘Ruth Dugdall’s novels are intelligent and gripping, with a sophisticated psychological sensibility. She is a huge talent.’ Sophie Hannah

They came for me, just like I knew they would. Luke had been dead for just three days.

Rose Wilks’ life is shattered when her newborn baby Joel is admitted to intensive care. Emma Hatcher has all that Rose lacks. Beauty. A loving husband. A healthy son. Until tragedy strikes and Rose is the only suspect.

Now, having spent nearly five years in prison in Ipswich, Rose is just weeks away from freedom. Her probation officer Cate must decide whether Rose is remorseful for her crime, or whether she remains a threat to society. As Cate is drawn in, she begins to doubt her own judgement.

Where is the line between love and obsession, can justice be served and, if so… by what means?

New Edition includes exclusive material and author Q&A

A clever, sophisticated, psychological crime thriller with dark twists you won’t see coming… Perfect for fans of Gillian Flynn, S.J. Watson, B A Paris and Sophie Hannah

 

Our Review

I’m not sure what attracted me to this book, and for once it couldn’t have been the cover. An indistinct, mysterious image that didn’t convey anything about the story at all.
But the book had won many awards and was highly recommended. Reviews said it was a ‘chilling psychological thriller with a shocking twist.’

The beginning of the book was more like a naïve memoir, almost childishly written in a matter of fact manner, but with just enough intrigue to get you thinking. I nearly gave up on it several times, but an interesting cast of characters with in-depth stories of their own, plus the childhood history made me carry on reading.

The introduction of the “Black Book Entries” was a revealing part of the story. Something mentally disturbed patients are encouraged to do to help their recovery. This gave the story an unexpected depth too. The pace picks up considerably, making the tension almost palpable.

So, after an agonisingly slow, deliberate start, the story escalates, building unbearably to its conclusion. A conclusion I really didn’t see coming. There were so many twists and turns, but nothing prepared me for the final chapter. It hit me like a truck. A brilliantly executed, grippingly original story.

About the Author

Ruth Dugdall worked as a Probation Officer for almost a decade, working in high security prisons with numerous high-risk criminals. Ruth’s writing is heavily influenced by her professional background, providing authenticity and credibility to the crime genre.