Blog Tour Book Review: Disclaimer by Renee Knight

Finding a mysterious novel at her bedside plunges documentary filmmaker Catherine Ravenscroft into a living nightmare. Though ostensibly fiction, The Perfect Stranger recreates in vivid, unmistakable detail the terrible day Catherine became hostage to a dark secret, a secret that only one other person knew--and that person is dead.

Now that the past is catching up with her, Catherine’s world is falling apart. Her only hope is to confront what really happened on that awful day even if the shocking truth might destroy her. (from Goodreads.com) 

Published April 2015 by Doubleday 

When I read the premise for Disclaimer, I knew I just had to read it. Imagine picking up a book and realising it's about you? And that this book had somehow mysteriously appeared in your home, revealing a secret you thought no-one else knew? It's an amazing, intriguing and original concept, which Renee Knight pulls off with finesse and style page after page. 

I was hooked from the very first page. With the story of the book and Catherine's mysterious secret being slowly drip fed to the reader, I was compelled to keep reading. Renee Knight does a fantastic job of throwing the reader off the scent, and tricking the reader into believing one thing before completely turning everything on its head. I was not prepared or expecting the major twist in Disclaimer and when it came I was taken aback. 

What I particularly liked about Disclaimer is how it made me think about how our perceptions of events and people can be so easily influenced. For the first two thirds of the book, it's easy to be unsympathetic to Catherine, by believing someone elses perception. This is a theme throughout the book, as the people close to Catherine are also led down the same path as the reader.  It was interesting how the character's assume the truth put before them so easily. 

This is a tense,page turning thriller without a doubt. What makes it stand out for me are the more subtle themes running throughout this book, which gives the reader plenty to think about. There's grief, bereavement, obsession, revenge and a damaged relationship between mother and son. I did think the ending lacked a little bit of an impact, as I expected a more explosive conclusion to the one we got. However, the ending also throws in shades of grey, and leaves the reader with a degree of sympathy and understanding where they probably least expected it. 

Disclaimer is a compelling read, unsettling in it's ability to convince the reader of a truth that doesn't exist. It also leaves you with a lot to think about afterwards. With an original and gripping premise, Disclaimer is a must read for fans of well written, taut, psychological thrillers and I'd strongly recommend it. 

Don't forget to follow week two of the Disclaimer blog tour. 


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