From Lipsyy : I started doing ‘lazy Saturday reviews’ as a way of getting reviews done in just 30 mins, and they proved to be quite popular. They are quick and snappy, and concentrate less on the plot (or content) and writing and more on my overall feelings about said book. They generally end up being a bit of a rant. My fave!
Some author names never leave your timeline and keep you curious. I had been hearing about Rachel Abbott forever but had never taken the leap and check her novels. Silly me!
Then I got lucky because the wonderful team at The Pigeonhole gave me the opportunity to discover the author and her latest novel!
Title: And So It Begins
Author: Rachel Abbott
Date of publication: 2018
Format: e-copy via The Pigeonhole website
So this is how it ends. It is clear to me now: one of us has to die.
Mark and Evie had a whirlwind romance. Evie brought Mark back to life after the sudden death of his first wife. Cleo, Mark’s sister, knows she should be happy for him. But Cleo doesn’t trust Evie…
When Evie starts having accidents at home, her friends grow concerned. Could Mark be causing her injuries? Called out to their cliff-top house one night, Sergeant Stephanie King finds two bodies entangled on blood-drenched sheets.
Where does murder begin? When the knife is raised to strike, or before, at the first thought of violence? As Evie stands trial, the jury is forced to consider – is there ever a proper defence for murder?
And So It Begins is a darkly compulsive psychological thriller with all the hallmarks of a Rachel Abbott bestseller – a provocative dilemma, richly-layered mystery, knife-edge tension, and brilliant characterization.
Thanks to Pigeonhole, I was lucky to be among the ‘masochist’ readers getting their fix of And So It Begins every morning. Let me tell you, this was the perfect mix! This novel brilliantly suited the format Pigeonhole offers! Oh, it got me frustrated, but it also reminded me to sit comfortably, grab a mug, and take thirty minutes just for me every day. I would like to thank Pigeonhole for this new reading experience that had me biting my nails and begging my iPhone to bring me more of the story faster than it was supposed to! Another great thing was that I got to read anywhere with my phone. Now, you’ll know I can’t do that much because my eyes don’t like this screen, but I got the right amount every day to keep me going at the supermarket queue, in the car while getting gas, or at the airport when Ryanair decided to be late.
Let’s investigate the book itself…
Charged held against And So It Begins: This novel is accused of being a strong new drug that makes the readers attack their own body (nails, hair) and forget all adult duties. It is deemed to be dangerous for society as those falling under its spell seem to forget about everything else.
The accused proudly pleads GUILTY.
How do we feel about this?
Hint number one: I couldn’t put it down. Two reasons.
- Everyone can write. I jot down groceries lists, I write blog posts, but that doesn’t mean I know how to use words as a weapon to hurt, comfort, scare, or push people off their limits. Rachel Abbott is GUILTY of mastering the beautiful art of writing. I am not even talking about how to add tension to a scene, or make a character feel real. I am pointing out the very core of words and their powers. Each and every sentence in this novel felt perfect, like a Beethoven composition. My eyes flew from one letter to the other with ease and my heart and mind only had to follow.
- What the hell was that plot?! If you’re a seasoned crime fiction lover, you might feel comfortable and believe you know where this is going. You might even be right! BUT the author throws red herrings better than a stripper sends her thong out to the crowd. I kept making assumptions, I held to hints that proved me right and then something would always creep in to make me doubt my opinion! I had no idea how to connect the dots, there were too many of them, despite the setting only offering us a handful of characters to play with. Until the very last page, I had a nagging doubt about every protagonist and I had no idea how everything could end well. But hey, do we always want things to end well? What does it even mean? I wanted a satisfying ending, and wow, I did get it!!!
Evie meets Mark, who has a very clingy sister, Cleo. Something feels weird from the start. Mark is a widower, his wife died in their house. Yummy, suspect husband!! From there, you get to witness relationships grow, fail, get bloody! Seriously, you don’t need to know anything, dive in And So It Begins naked as a baby!
Hint number two: the accomplices
I usually at least one character I appreciate to connect to a story, but this time, I was drawn to those dark souls, their motives and the reasons behind every move of their finger. There was something very cathartic in watching them fall into their own trap, feeling the walls close in on them, drowning in the ocean of their mistakes and personality.
The prosecution doesn’t have anything to add.
The jury is out: And So It Begins is guilty of being a dazzling piece of crime fiction that you don’t want to miss!
Pre-order the book now! Amazon
Rachel Abbott’s debut thriller, Only the Innocent, was an international bestseller, reaching the number one position in the Amazon charts both in the UK and US. This was followed by the number one bestselling novels The Back Road, Sleep Tight, Stranger Child, Nowhere Child (a short novel based on the characters from Stranger Child), Kill Me Again and The Sixth Window. Her most recent novel, Come a Little Closer, is available from February 2018.
Rachel’s novels have now been translated into over 20 languages and her books have sold over 3 million copies in the English language.
In 2015 Amazon celebrated the first five years of the Kindle in the UK, and announced that Rachel was the #1 bestselling independent author over the five-year period. She was also placed #14 in the chart of all authors. Stranger Child was the most borrowed novel for the Kindle in the first half of 2015.
Rachel splits her time between Alderney – a beautiful island off the coast of France – and the Le Marche region of Italy, where she is able to devote all her time to writing fiction. For more information, see Rachel’s website, or follow her on Twitter.