This story follows a nanny who accepts a post in an isolated mansion in the Scottish highlands that appears, in some ways, to be haunted. Wow. What did I just read. I still have chills! This book is 100% worth reading whether you are a fan of thrillers, dramas, mysteries, anything. I wasn't sure what to expect, but it certainly wasn't this. Ruth Ware has done a fantastic job of creating an intense sense of atmosphere and very realistic characters that you become entirely immersed with. This book is a slow burn, but it is so impeccably written that despite there not being major plot twists and shocks every chapter, it only builds the suspense. I couldn't help but be reminded of the horror movies that rely on only a few jump scares for the vast majority of the film, but ultimately create a uncomfortableness that cannot be avoided. Your skin will crawl and you'll get shivers down your spine and you won't be able to place why. Throughout, there are only a couple of breadcrumbs being dropped, small hints which keep you turning the page even when nothing necessarily thrilling has happened yet.
I'm not going to give anything away regarding the twist. It's chilling, it made by jaw drop and say 'oh my God' out loud. It made me keep read over my mac and cheese when I'm staying with my parents in quarantine, ignorantly being rude because I just HAD to keep reading.
It's bizarre in many ways, where so much of the book is taken up by medial and pleasant tasks. But there is an air to it, an atmosphere where you are constantly waiting for something bad to happen, and constantly feeling an ongoing discomfort. This may be off-putting for some thriller fans, and perhaps some would feel dissatisfied with the lack of continuous action. However, I found it unbelievably effective and would absolutely encourage you to give it a try! This could well be one of my favourites in this genre that I have ever read!
Initial Prediction: 4 stars
Final Rating: 5 stars