The Suspects has Emma as its unreliable narrator accompanied by four other equally unlikeable characters, with barely a redeemable feature among them: Stuart, Zak, Imogen and Xanthe. It’s the late 80’s in Bristol. Not a great time to be young and trying to gain a foothold in the big wide world. Nevertheless, these five individuals are attempting it, albeit not very well.
They’re thrown together on a trainee program at a magazine publishing house and despite barely knowing each other, decide that it would be a good idea to pool their resources and purchase a house together. And as you do when you’re young, you throw lots of parties, filled with loads of people you don’t necessarily know. What could possibly go wrong?
Quite a bit, it seems. After a New Years party, the inconceivable happens, and they discover a dead body in their basement. Panic inevitably sets in and they decide that rather than reporting it to the police, it would be a better idea to cover up the whole incident … as long as they’ve all got each other’s backs and stick to their story, everything will be fine. Until they start to realise they don’t actually know each other very well at all, and they’re not really sure they can trust these people they’re living with. Playing regular games of Scruples, doesn’t quite seem to do the trick at revealing hidden character traits that are determined to remain concealed.
This is an incredibly clever, well-written page-turner that kept me reading well into the early hours of the morning! There are so many twists, and so many secrets that you’ll be left reeling. For me though, the fact that I found all of the characters so thoroughly unpleasant, and yet could not put this book down was evidence of a 5-star read! I just couldn’t wait to see what their next mistake would be, how they would wrong-foot each other next, what mean and malicious comment would come out of someone’s mouth to get their fellow conspirator’s back up! It was all so torturous and dark; so deliciously dreadful! I’ll stop there because I’m beginning to sound like some sort of evil voyeur! Just read the book!
About the author:
Katharine Johnson was born in Bristol and now lives in Berkshire. She’s worked as a journalist on lots of magazines and has written a history book about Windsor. When not writing you’ll usually find her with a book in one hand and a coffee in the other, restoring a house in Italy, walking her spaniel or playing netball (although not usually at the same time.)
Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on the blog tour. Follow the tour to see what other bloggers are saying about The Suspects …