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Desert Isle Keeper

I See You

Clare Mackintosh

Zoe Walker takes the same route to work every day. Same streets, same trains, same stations, even the same seat on the train. She thinks nothing of this, chalking it up to a comforting routine, until one day she spies her own face in a classified advertisement for FindTheOne.com. What follows is a suspenseful and gripping tale that left me practically unable to put the book down.

Clare Mackintosh’s I Let You Go was an incredibly strong début and my favourite book of 2016; so to have her second book be equally compelling was an incredibly pleasant discovery. But as with that book, reviewing I See You is nearly impossible. I have agonized over how to explain my love for this book without revealing any plot details, and because of that, this is easily one of the worst constructed reviews I’ve ever written. The book synopsis covers only the first few pages, so if it sounds like something you’re into and you want to be as spoiler free as possible, then click away now.

If you’re intrigued but a little nervous about some triggers, let me say this: stalking plays a big part in this book, and the whole thing is predatory. This also means there are kidnapping/manipulation elements which may be traumatizing for some readers.

For anyone still here, this book is one thrilling ride. It feels scarily and creepily real, especially after the big reveal of who and why and how. I was left slightly speechless but also went directly to my IT-professional husband to ask some serious questions about CCTV, privacy, and my social media presence. The story is set in London, which adds to its authenticity; CCTV cameras are everywhere in that city.  Once Zoe figures out that she’s not the only one on the website and that whoever is following her is following a lot more women, the atmosphere of anxiety that permeates the whole book is quickly heightened.

There are a lot of books which could claim prime spots for British suspense novels. I was wandering through a few bookstores on a recent trip to the U.K. and that genre absolutely clogs the shelves. (I did pick up a few ones from authors I’ve not seen on U.S. shelves in order to continue my 2016 female-centric crime/suspense binge into 2017 – so keep an eye out for upcoming reviews!) What makes Ms. Mackintosh stand out is that her plotting is airtight and the twists really are twists. For anyone who heeded my call to read her first book, heed this one as well: I See You is a disturbing treatise on the public spaces women occupy in an age of decreasing digital privacy and it will absolutely keep you turning the pages.

 

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Book Details

Reviewer :      Kristen Donnelly


Grade :     A


Sensuality :      Warm


Book Type :     


Review Tags :     


10 Comments

  1. LeeB. February 24, 2017 at 9:49 am - Reply

    I just finished this last night and it was excellent! The author really has a great imagination. Having been to London many many many times, though, I do find it hard to believe people can sit in the exact same seat on the Tube every day. But just a minor quibble. I am definitely going to be watching everyone while I ride the Tube on future trips. 😉

    • Kristen Donnelly
      Kristen Donnelly February 24, 2017 at 11:58 am - Reply

      She’s gotten some crap for that in interviews! Her explanation was that Zoe is one of the first stops on her line – which I think is really the Overground and not the Tube in reality – and goes to the same carriage and sits in the same space enough that the cameras catch her at nearly the same point every day. I side eyed this too, tbh. But everything else worked so well, I’ll forgive it.

  2. ElizaD February 24, 2017 at 10:59 am - Reply

    I really enjoyed this book and have recommended it to anyone who will listen. It made me think twice about all of the routines I have. 🙂

    • Kristen Donnelly
      Kristen Donnelly February 24, 2017 at 11:59 am - Reply

      Eliza – same. I work in a part of a city that absolutely does not have CCTV and I’m still paranoid!

  3. BeBra February 25, 2017 at 4:31 am - Reply

    It was realy great! Here you cn find my review on the german version Alleine bist du nie : https://bettysweltblog.wordpress.com/2017/01/16/thriller-rezension-alleine-bist-du-nie-von-clare-mackintosh/

  4. Anne Marble AAR March 19, 2017 at 7:02 pm - Reply

    I loved this one, too! I suspected everyone, at one point or another. 🙂

  5. Maggie March 20, 2017 at 11:46 am - Reply

    I locked on to the villain revealed at the end from the beginning (no idea why, I read the first line that character said and was like “guilty”) but was surprised by the villain the heroine caught first. Didn’t suspect them till almost the middle of the book. I agree it was a really good read.

  6. Dabney Grinnan
    Dabney Grinnan April 15, 2017 at 11:08 am - Reply

    I am outlier here. I read this in a day–flying over the Pacific ocean–and while I agree it was a fabulously fun read, I found its resolution unsatisfying. I needed way more context for the actions of those who run the site. I think I Let You Go is a stronger story. That said, I couldn’t put this down!

    • Kristen Donnelly
      Kristen Donnelly April 18, 2017 at 1:53 pm - Reply

      Dabney, now that I’ve had some space from this one – it’s not staying with me the way I Let You Go did. I found the resolution satisfying at the time – I see where you’d want more, though – but I wonder now what I’d think. Not sure this’ll be a Top 10 for the year the way I Let You Go was. We’ll see.

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