Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Book Review: I See You by Clare Mackintosh

Title: I SEE YOU

Author: Clare Mackintosh

Pages: 372

Publication: 28th July 2016 by Sphere

Reason for Reading: I read I LET YOU GO recently and really enjoyed it, so I was eager to try more of Mackintosh’s writing.

Goodreads Synopsis: You know exactly where you're going.

You're not alone.

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it's there. There's no explanation: just a website, a grainy image and a phone number. She takes it home to her family, who are convinced it's just someone who looks like Zoe. But the next day the advert shows a photo of a different woman, and another the day after that.

Is it a mistake? A coincidence? Or is someone keeping track of every move they make . . .


I SEE YOU is a gripping psychological thriller that plays on the comfort of routine and twists it into something to be feared. Mackintosh plants the seeds of suspicion very carefully throughout the story, so that you end up suspecting everyone and everything. I thought that I had guessed the culprit, but my smugness was soon cut short. The twists in this book don’t feel forced and they don’t feel too much, but are instead pulled off really well and have the maximum effect.

As with I LET YOU GO, 2nd person narration is used throughout the book. I sometimes find 2nd person narration a bit out of place, but in I SEE YOU it adds to the general creepy feeling. This was especially the case because I was listening to the audiobook, which recently won an Audible Sounds of Crime award - I would definitely recommend listening to it!

Another thing I SEE YOU has in common with Mackintosh’s previous book is that it is also told from the perspective of a police officer as well as the main protagonist. Mackintosh used to be in the police force herself, and so these chapters feel very realistic rather than feeling rigid and over-researched.

I’ve talked before about certain thriller tropes I dislike, some of which are evident in I LET YOU GO, but fortunately I didn’t notice anything similar in I SEE YOU; another factor which added to my enjoyment of the novel. I would say that it is a slow burner to begin with as the story and characters are set up, but this has the effect of making you feel more comfortable with the characters which ultimately leads to a bigger impact.

I’m not usually a fan of epilogues - I don’t think they’re necessary a lot of the time - but I loved the addition of an epilogue in I SEE YOU! It made sure I was on the edge of my seat until the very last words and left me with a feeling of unease that all good psychological thrillers should leave you with, even once you’ve stopped reading.

Overall, I was very impressed by I SEE YOU and in no way disappointed after enjoying I LET YOU GO so much. Dynamic characters, packed full of action, and most importantly unsettlingly realistic - it leaves you with a lot to think about once you’ve finished. I give it 5 out of 5 stars!