The Watcher by Ross Armstrong
eBook review copy; 336 pages
The Watcher by Ross Armstrong is a recommended novel of suspense with an unreliable narrator.
"Lily Gullick lives with her husband, Aiden, in a brand-new apartment
opposite a building that has been marked for demolition. A keen
bird-watcher, she can't help spying on her neighbors.
day Lily sees something suspicious through her binoculars, and soon her
elderly neighbor Jean is found dead. Lily, intrigued by the social
divide in her local area as it becomes increasingly gentrified, knows
that she has to act. But her interference is not going unnoticed, and as
she starts to get close to the truth, her own life comes under threat."
With a nod to Hitchcock's Rear Window, the narrator, Lily,
is watching her neighbors and neighborhood out her window with
binoculars and giving those she sees names, as well as recording what
they are doing. Her husband, Aiden is even writing a book about the
famous director. The Watcher is written in the form of a long
letter or journal entry to a recipient who is identified much later in
the book. As the novel progresses, Lily reveals more about herself and
you will begin to realize that something is off with her and her
responses. Can she be believed?
This is a satisfying debut novel and has several surprises along the way
that you won't see coming - along with some you might. Since Lily is
the only character we have any insight into, we have to view the action
through her perceptions and conclusions - and they will start to feel
skewed after a bit. It is a novel about perception and creates a fair
amount of psychological suspense as the action and Lily's conclusions
become more intense.
Those who enjoy mysteries and like following the point-of-view of one character should certainly look into The Watcher.
My review copy was courtesy of MIRA.