Disclaimer by Renée Knight

disclaimer

One of my very favorite genres is the ‘suburban suspense’ or ‘domestic suspense’ novel. Books like The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl, etc. They can be extremely well done with vivid writing, well drawn characters and clever, tight plotting. Or they can be predictable, messy and dull. Thankfully, Disclaimer is in the former category. It is an excellent example of this particular brand of novel.

The story is told in alternating chapters first from the viewpoint of the revengeful stalker who is trying to ruin the life of an award-winning documentary filmmaker, and then from the filmmaker, Catherine’s, point of view. Twenty years previously the stalker’s son died and he’s convinced that Catherine was the cause. His late wife wrote a fictionalized version of the accident that killed their son and the stalker has found it, self-published it and made sure that Catherine, her husband and her son have seen it. Though it is fictionalized there’s enough truth in it for Catherine’s husband to realize that it is about her and their marriage and family is utterly devastated. As the novel progresses, the suspense increases and the stalker gets angrier – the stalker wants more than to ruin Catherine’s life – he wants to end it. But then the plot takes quite a turn, something I didn’t see coming at all – and it left me breathless and quietly horrified.

Disclaimer is not only an excellent suspense novel but a novel that makes you question your own assumptions about how well you really know people, even your own family. I think this is a stunning novel and if you are in the mood for a meditative page-turner this summer this is the book for you.

8 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I have to say that I struggled to get to the end of this one – partly because it was a dark story at the wrong moment, partly because I didn’t like the writing style – but I do have to agree that the author is good at what she does.

    1. Yes, it was pretty dark and the writing style took a bit of getting used to. I do think the author is very talented and I’m looking forward to seeing what she does next.

    1. I thought the twist was so sad, yet clever, in that it completely changed my view of the whole situation and of Catherine. I like my assumptions to be blown apart!

  2. I’ve heard of the title but not what it was about until your post. I think I should get through The Girl on the Train first but would give this a go.

Thank you for reading and commenting.

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