Sunday, January 19, 2020

The Other People

The Other People by C. J. Tudor
Penguin Random House: 1/28/20
eBook review copy; 336 pages
ISBN-13: 9781984824998 

The Other People by C. J. Tudor is a very highly recommended unsettling thriller.

Three years ago Gabe Forman was driving home on the M1 stuck in traffic behind an old rusty car covered with bumper stickers when suddenly his five-year-old daughter Izzy's face appears in the back window and she mouths "Daddy." Gabe tries to follow the car but loses it. When he returns home, he finds out his wife and daughter were killed, but Gabe knows what he saw and he knows his daughter is still alive, despite the fact that his father-in-law positively identifies the bodies. He was a suspect in their murders for a while, but cleared. Now he spends his days driving up and down the motorway looking for the car he last saw his daughter in.

Fran and her daughter Alice are constantly on the run, trying to keep ahead of the people who want to hurt them. She knows too much and owes some people. Alice has a problem with mirrors, can suddenly fall asleep and has terrifying visions of a girl on a beach. When she wakes up from these visions, she has a pebble in her hand. Alice carries around a bag filled up with these pebbles.

These characters, along with others, are introduced and their stories are told. Eventually the stories and characters merge together at the ending of The Other People - and the title is explained. I don't want to explain any more of the plot than this as it is best to read it and experience what happens and is revealed as the narrative threads are explored. All of the characters are all well-developed and realistic. You will feel for Gabe, endlessly looking for his daughter, Izzy, and you'll be interested in what is happening to all of the characters as they rush to the point where their stories merge.

Great writing is notably present throughout The Other People. The plot is a thriller, as the mystery of what happened to Izzy is ongoing and the narrative also has mysterious undertones. Really, it's a little eerie and a little creepy with supernatural undertones. Once you start reading, you will find it difficult to stop. There are enough twists and surprises to keep you guessing until the story reaches a very satisfying denouement.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of Penguin Random House.

No comments: