The Girl Before by J.P. Delaney – Book Review

Title: The Girl Before

Author: J.P. Delaney

Published: 26th January 2017

Publisher: Quercus

Genre: Thriller, Mystery

Pages: 416

Format: E-Book

Rating: **** (4/5 Stars)

About: Enter the world of One Folgate Street and discover perfection . . . but can you pay the price?

Jane stumbles on the rental opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to live in a beautiful ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect, on condition she abides by a long list of exacting rules. After moving in, she discovers that a previous tenant, Emma, met a mysterious death there – and starts to wonder if her own story will be a re-run of the girl before. As twist after twist catches the reader off guard, Emma’s past and Jane’s present become inexorably entwined in this tense, page-turning portrayal of psychological obsession.

Following in the footsteps of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, The Girl Before is being brought to the big screen by Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard.

Review: So I did really enjoy this book. It’s one of those books that when you start reading it, you can’t put it down.

I don’t know if this was really a good thing or not though because it did mean that I’m now doing my final essay for uni at the very last minute. But, you know, all that matters is that I had fun reading it. So at least I was happy and happiness is key to everything in life.

People have compared this book to others of the same style. Particularly, Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train. I do think that you can link this book into this category, making it the third Girl story. I am aware that they are all by different authors, but I only put the three of them together to say that if you enjoyed the other books then you will certainly enjoy this one.

I don’t think it was as good as Gone Girl though, and I do have a few reasons why.

Firstly, unlike in Gone Girl, I did kind of guess what the ending was going to be like.

Beware, this next line might spoil the surprise.

It’s one of those books where all the evidence is pointing at one person which means you get two choices. Either the author is trying to convince you that that person is the person who caused a crime, or the author is trying to trick the reader into doubting themselves, by making you think that it is someone completely different.

It’s one of those stories where the reader has to read between the lines themselves (I mean obviously because it’s a mystery and there would be no fun in it if you didn’t try and figure it out yourself).

I’m not going to say what happens (because that would just ruin the mystery), but I will admit that I did have some theory as to what was actually going to happen (I say theory because I didn’t have a proper solid idea).

I really did love how the book was written though. The idea to use alternative chapters between the two girls just added loads more drama to it.

It was also great how the two paralleled each other. You kept getting one step closer to the end and at the same time, you would be thrown back into your own investigation at all the twists that J.P. Delaney puts in this book because, of course, being a good mystery book means that nothing is right from the very beginning.

Some of the twists did seem a bit unexpected but as you read further into the book you realize how necessary they are to the plot.

They create such a reaction from the reader, that it’s actually a bit horrible. The fact is, this book deals with situations that actually do happen. It deals with ‘rape’, ‘lying’, ‘miscarriages’ and more. Without giving too much more away, it just describes things that most people are lucky enough to not have to deal with or even think about.

I know it’s just a book, but a lot of thought clearly went into how to write the story, since it deals with some difficult issues.

I do have one complaint, which is just my personal opinion so most people probably wouldn’t care. But the use of the word ‘daddy‘ in some of the sex scenes just made me cringe so bad. I get it, some people actually like the use of this word, and you know to each their own, but I couldn’t help but gag everytime it was there in front of me.

Thank you world, for ruining a very innocent word.

But besides that, yeah I have no other complaints.

This book is perfect if you want to lose yourself completely in another world. Be prepared to not even notice the day go by as you obsess over this book and the mystery within it.

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