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  • Barbara Copperthwaite


“Will grab readers and hold onto them until the

bitter end”


The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do.

You’d like to get to know Grace better.

But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.

Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.

Sometimes, the perfect marriage is the perfect lie.


A dark story of domestic bliss gone wrong, it is possible to imagine Behind Closed Doors happening on any street in Britain – and that is its strength.

The start is slow, but I had to keep reading, eager to discover how the story was going to unfold. Just what hold did Jack have over Grace? What was his background?

The narrative slips between past and present, revealing all. Some of the secrets are truly sickening, and Jack’s ultimate plan was twisted in the extreme. Finally, the timeline narratives collide at the end for a showdown.

My problem? I did find myself frustrated with Grace at times. Yes, Jack was clever and had her tied up in psychological knots, but sometimes she simply didn’t ring true. I’ve interviewed countless women in abusive relationships, who have found it hard to break free, and I have always understood their reasons. The problem here was that the author hasn’t fully captured the psychological and emotional state of someone in a situation such as this, in my opinion.

For all that, though, this is a work of fiction that will grab readers and hold onto them until the bitter end. I have absolutely no doubt that Behind Closed Doors will be a massive hit – and that B.A. Paris’s debut is the first of many successes.

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