Synopsis from Simon & Schuster:
Melville Heights is one of the nicest neighborhoods in Bristol, England; home to doctors and lawyers and old-money academics. It’s not the sort of place where people are brutally murdered in their own kitchens. But it is the sort of place where everyone has a secret. And everyone is watching you.
As the headmaster credited with turning around the local school, Tom Fitzwilliam is beloved by one and all—including Joey Mullen, his new neighbor, who quickly develops an intense infatuation with this thoroughly charming yet unavailable man. Joey thinks her crush is a secret, but Tom’s teenaged son Freddie—a prodigy with aspirations of becoming a spy for MI5—excels in observing people and has witnessed Joey behaving strangely around his father.
One of Tom’s students, Jenna Tripp, also lives on the same street, and she’s not convinced her teacher is as squeaky clean as he seems. For one thing, he has taken a particular liking to her best friend and fellow classmate, and Jenna’s mother—whose mental health has admittedly been deteriorating in recent years—is convinced that Mr. Fitzwilliam is stalking her.
Meanwhile, twenty years earlier, a schoolgirl writes in her diary, charting her doomed obsession with a handsome young English teacher named Mr. Fitzwilliam…
About: Watching You is a mystery thriller written by Lisa Jewell. It will be published on 12/26/2018 by Atria Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, paperback, 336 pages. The genres are mystery, thriller, suspense, and fiction. According to the publisher’s website, “founded in 2002, Atria was from the start intended to be an environment where new ideas could flourish, the best writers of fiction and nonfiction could thrive and connect with an ever-widening readership, and the best practices of traditional publishing could be integrated with cutting-edge developments in the digital world. In short, a place where great books could come to light.” Please see below for more information about the author and publisher.
My Experience: I started reading Watching You on 12/7/2018 and finished it on 12/9/2018. This book is a fantastic read! I was hooked right from the start and couldn’t put down until chapters later. I actually read all of rainy Saturday and couldn’t do much of anything else. I like the interesting set of characters. They each have a keen sense of observation and obsession. Freddie started out such a loner with his neighborhood watch. I’m surprised that he transformed, changed into someone who is able to work with another person to investigate a mystery and doing things that are outside of his comfort zone. I like how careful Jenna is and the technology she uses in this book to watch out for her friend.
This book is told in the first person point of view following Josephine (Joey) Mullen, 26 as she speaks to her mother at her grave in Jan 2017. This book started out with a diary entry dated 1996 about falling in love to someone she shouldn’t. Then the prologue follows Detective Rose as she examines a crime scene that occurred in the kitchen in March 24, 2017. This book is divided into four parts. The story has a timeline beginning January leading up to, with Joey’s view being told in third person point of view about her crushing on Alfie, got him, and married him and now crushing on her brother’s neighbor Tom Fitzwilliam, married with a son. The second point of view is Freddie Fitzwilliam, 15 as he watches down on the neighbors with his digital binoculars from his attic bedroom. The third view is Jenna Tripp, 16 who attends the school where Tom Fitzwilliam is a headmaster. There are recorded police interviews dated March 25, in between the timelines. The police are trying to determine who the killer is while readers wonder who is the victim.
Watching You is very well written and keeps me interested from the first page! The mystery points to any reasons, any victims, and any killers. I like that I couldn’t guess who until the end. Each person’s story is personal, honest, and sincere and it just makes me want to read on. The domestic abuse has a twist and it’s a bit more than other domestic books I have read. I like the organization of this thriller. Those recorded interviews gives readers something to look forward to rather than just so much build up for the big reveal, the author spread out little sprinkles throughout the story to hook readers on. This is my first read from this author and it won’t be the last. I highly recommend everyone to read this book!
Pro: fast paced, page turner, obsession, suspense, mystery, prologue & epilogue
I rate it 5 stars!
About the Author:
Lisa Jewell is the internationally bestselling author of sixteen novels, including the New York Times bestseller Then She Was Gone, as well as I Found You, The Girls in the Garden, and The House We Grew Up In. In total, her novels have sold more than two million copies across the English-speaking world and her work has also been translated into sixteen languages so far. Lisa lives in London with her husband and their two daughters. Connect with her on Twitter @LisaJewellUK and on Facebook @LisaJewellOfficial. (Photo and info obtained from Simon & Schuster’s website).
More Information about Atria Books
***Disclaimer: Many thanks to Atria Books for the opportunity to read and review. Please be assured that my opinions are honest.