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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

Review: BEHIND HER EYES, Sarah Pinborough

Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough. Review by Barbara Copperthwaite

“Ingenious, dastardly, devastatingly well-plotted, and totally unique.”


Don’t Trust This Book

Don’t Trust These People

Don’t Trust Yourself

And whatever you do, DON’T give away that ending…


Since her husband walked out, Louise has made her son her world, supporting them both with her part-time job. But all that changes when she meets…


Young, successful and charming – Louise cannot believe a man like him would look at her twice let alone be attracted to her. But that all comes to a grinding halt when she meets his wife…


Beautiful, elegant and sweet – Louise's new friend seems perfect in every way. As she becomes obsessed by this flawless couple, entangled in the intricate web of their marriage, they each, in turn, reach out to her.

But only when she gets to know them both does she begin to see the cracks… Is David really is the man she thought she knew and is Adele as vulnerable as she appears?

Just what terrible secrets are they both hiding and how far will they go to keep them?


I’m almost sorry to write this review at this moment. Why? Because Behind Her Eyes is a book I am desperate to talk to other people about, desperate for others to read RIGHT NOW! But they can’t because it isn’t released until 26 January (I received a review copy from HarperFiction). Jot that date in your diary, because this is a book not to be missed…

Right from the intriguing and disturbing start, the sense of growing unease makes the air crackle every time a page is turned. Despite its slow teasing out of facts – or rather, because of it - this is a book you will devour, desperate to plunge yourself further into its tingling tension.

The reader is thrown into the middle of a marriage in its death throes. But who is telling the truth, when everyone has their own axe to grind? Just who is controlling who? From the very beginning I was changing my mind about who is the bad guy in this marriage, as each character is so relatable yet also has flashes of something uncomfortable and nasty beneath the surface. The characters are a bit of a cliché, though – the devastatingly beautiful and fragile wife, trying hard to be perfect; the pretty secretary and single mum, trying to make ends meet, who falls for her handsome new boss; the handsome boss with a secret…

Still, I was hooked, wondering just what the outcome would be, although initially it was along the blasé lines of: ‘will it follow the pattern of Gone Girl or Girl On A Train?’ That soon passed as I realised I was reading something that is a very different animal indeed.

Behind Her Eyes boasts the hashtag #WTFthatending – and rightly so. It is ingenious, dastardly, devastatingly well-plotted, and totally unique.

It does, however, require a huge leap of faith on the part of the reader; a total suspension of disbelief that many lovers of crime fiction and psychological thrillers may not be happy about having to make. Honestly? I think the single mistake regarding this book is that it is being marketed as a straight thriller. It needs to be clear to readers up front that they are actually reading something with a touch of science fiction or the supernatural – think The Ice Twins, by S.K. Tremayne; that sort of thing.

This is a strange, genre-blurring tale that is definitely going to get people talking. My prediction is that it will be a ‘Marmite book’, with people either loving it or hating it. For my part, I absolutely loved it – from the writing style, to the brilliant plot twists, and the masterful execution of a jaw-dropping ending, Behind Her Eyes is a must-read.

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