Thank you to NetGalley and St.Martin’s Press for this ARC in exchange for my honest review.
Synopsis (Goodreads): Kate Youngblood is disappearing. Muddling through her late 30s as a creative writing professor at Blackwood college, she’s dangerously close to never being noticed again. The follow-up novel to her successful debut tanked. Her husband left her for a woman ten years younger. She’s always been bright, beautiful, independent and a little wild, but now her glow is starting to vanish. She’s heading into an age where her eyes are less blue, her charm worn out, and soon no one will ever truly look at her, want to know her, again.
Sam Grist is Kate’s most promising student. An unflinching writer with razor-sharp clarity who gravitates towards dark themes and twisted plots, his raw talent is something Kate wants to nurture into literary success. But he’s not there solely to be the best writer. He’s been watching her. Wanting her. Working his way to her for years. As Sam slowly makes his way into Kate’s life, they enter a deadly web of dangerous lies and forbidden desire. But how far will his fixation go? And how far will she allow it?
Review: This was an absolutely gripping read! I was not expecting it to hook me in the way it did, but it was worth reading!
This story is told from the alternating perspectives of Kate and Sam. Crazily enough, I was most drawn to Sam’s character. He was obsessive, creepy, and willing to go to all lengths to win Kate over. He reminded me a lot of Joe from You by Caroline Kepnes; both of them were stalkers who just had to have the girl of their dreams. However, Sam was a lot scarier than Joe, with a more intense personality. His behaviour chilled me to the core. I loved how the author created this amazing chemistry between Kate and Sam; it was intense, it was sensual, and it was 100% addictive. I could completely understand why Kate felt drawn to Sam. I’m also glad that the author gave Kate a little bit of common sense so that she didn’t just act based on emotions.
I really enjoyed the writing style of this novel. Each chapter was short, making me want to keep reading. The pace was fast and intense, so much so that I got completely caught up in the story. I wish the ending had had a little more to it but apart from that, this was an absolutely fantastic read. If you are looking for a very intense psychological thriller, I would recommend this one! Solid 4/5 stars from me.