Monday, April 18, 2011

The Other Half Lives by Sophie Hannah



  • Hardback: 552 pages
  • Genre : Psychological Thriller
  • Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton  2009
  • Source: Purchased
  • Review Quote ‘For those who demand emotional intelligence and literary verve from their thrillers, Sophie Hannah is the writer of choice’  The Guardian Newspaper.


Not quite as enthralling as the previous three novels I have read by Sophie Hannah, as I found it confusing and had to keep checking back to remind myself of what was happening.  Thank goodness I was not reading this in eBook format, as it is much harder to flip backwards and forwards.  Once again it is Sophie Hannah’s now signature format of a psychological thriller and the police officers Simon Waterhouse and Charlie Zailer from her previous novels are investigating the case. It does not matter though if you have not read her previous novels as apart from the reappearance of some of the characters in the police force the main theme of the story is unconnected. The only thing you will have missed out on is the changing relationship between Simon and Charlie, by the way the Charlie is female for those of you that might be wondering.

The mystery of this novel is really weird and certainly makes you think.  The female protagonist is Ruth Bussey a young lady who has moved to a new area to try and rebuild her life, after past mistakes for which she has been punished excessively'.  To her disbelief she befriends and falls in love Adrian Seed who proves to be very intense. The problems start when in an attempt to show Ruth how much he loves her he confides in her, that he once killed someone. When he tells Ruth she is stunned as she recognises the name, Mary Trelease, as that of someone she knows to be very much alive!  Ruth is already struggling with her own dark secrets when Aidan unburdens himself and this announcement leaves her feeling both confused and terrified.

Ruth for reasons that will be revealed if you read the book decides to get in touch with policewoman Charlie Zailer whom she feels will be sympathetic to her dilemma. The story builds with narrative from Ruth, Charlie and Simon as this chilling tale of desperate relationships unfolds. It has so many twists and turns along the way, which is what I found a tad confusing and the reason I had to keep checking back, to get my facts straight. Nothing is clear in this novel as all the characters have a different take on reality.

I will be very surprised if this does not keep even the most avid crime fan guessing, enough said  now as I do not include spoilers. 

If you have not yet discovered this author for yourself, I recommend all her novels, she has converted me to reading a genre I had previously tended to avoid.


 Sophie HannahSophie Hannah

More information about Sophie can be found at Sophie Hannah Official Website

I am also posting links to my reviews for the last three novels as I thought some of you might be interested.

Little Face by Sophie Hannah

Hurting Distance by Sophie Hannah

The Point of Rescue by Sophie Hannah

I have linked this post to the April Reading Linky Party here

What We're Reading


  1. This one sounds intriguing, but as it is not your favorite, which one should I start with or should I read them in order?

  2. I havent read her before.I am a huge fan of psych thrillers,so this one goes straight to my TBR.

  3. Ricki Jill@ Read them in order if you possibly can as you will then get the feel of the developing relationship between Charlie and Simon.

    Bhargavi@ If you are a fan of psychological thrillers then do try and read them all and in order if you can.

  4. This sounds really interesting and I might start back at the beginning with this series. Thank you for linking up to our Linky Party today!

  5. Bonnie@ If you like the sound of this author's work then I recommend you start with the first one.

  6. Hi
    This book sounds intriguing and I'll look for it and her previous ones on Amazon, thanks for the recommendation.
    Thanks too for visiting Normandy Life and signing up to follow, I'm returning the favour as I think we have similar reading tastes.
    Happy Easter, Maggie.

  7. Have a bright and joyful Easter, my friend xxxx

  8. Maggie@ Do let me know what you think of them and I hope you have also had a Happy Easter.

    Saskia@ thanks for the greetings, same to you.


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