Wednesday, 10 July 2019

What You Did by Claire McGowan - Blog Tour Review

A vicious assault. A devastating accusation. Who should she trust, her husband or her best friend?

It was supposed to be the perfect reunion: six university friends together again after twenty years. Host Ali finally has the life she always wanted, a career she can be proud of and a wonderful family with her college boyfriend, now husband. But that night her best friend makes an accusation so shocking that nothing will ever be the same again.

When Karen staggers in from the garden, bleeding and traumatised, she claims that she has been assaulted by Ali’s husband, Mike. Ali must make a split-second decision: who should she believe? Her horrified husband, or her best friend? With Mike offering a very different version of events, Ali knows one of them is lying, but which? And why?

When the ensuing chaos forces her to re-examine the golden era the group shared at university, Ali realises there are darker memories too. Memories that have lain dormant for decades. Memories someone would kill to protect.

My Review

What You Did was such a tense and emotionally charged read. Given the subject covered it was quite an upsetting and difficult read in parts. That being said I was totally gripped and finished it within a few hours.

The plot is gripping and such a rollercoaster. Many times throughout I changed my mind about was responsible and what had really happened.

Ali doesn't know who or what to believe. As more things come to light, she finds herself more and more confused. Who should she believe? I had a lot of sympathy for Ali and I thought she was a great character, even though she makes some decisions that aren't that great.

Another side of the book I loved was the relationship between Ali and Karen's children, Cass and Jake. They have grown up together and are really close. But all of that is called into question with what is happening between their parents. Both of the youngsters have issues and are keeping secrets of their own

What You Did is a story filled with lies, secrets and shocks. I really enjoyed reading and I thought Claire McGowan's way of telling this type of story was excellent. Her writing made this a book I couldn't put down. I can't say too much without spoilers. But I will say this is a book where nothing is as it seems. The plot is outstanding with characters so well written you will struggle to know who is actually telling the truth.

About Claire McGowan

Born in Northern Ireland in 1981, Claire McGowan studied in Oxford then lived overseas in France and China. She is the author of standalone thriller The Fall, and the Paula Maguire series, including The Lost, The Dead Ground, The Silent Dead, A Savage Hunger, Blood Tide, and The Killing House. The Paula Maguire series was optioned by the BBC in 2014. A ten-part radio drama written by Claire was broadcast on Radio 4 in early 2019, and as a screenwriter she was selected as the 2017/18 Nickelodeon International Writing Fellow.

Claire set up the Crime Thriller Writing MA at City University, London, and has also taught for the Arvon Foundation, Guardian Masterclasses and at many literary festivals.

As Eva Woods, she has published four women’s fiction novels, including the bestselling How To Be Happy.

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