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This is one of those mysteries where the "mystery" is just something the main characters are not telling their readers until the end, and I am getting really tired of this trope. This story rotates between pushing through the mundane details of the characters' lives to propping up some absurd scenarios. There is no way a top partner in a prestigious law firm would allow the husband of a direct employee to just move in with her after a two-week relationship. Other characters are pretty cookie-cutter, especially the children. You have the overly-sensitive chubby kid and than the bully, and that pretty much sums up their character traits. And the ending...while the ending is just painful to read. The entire finale is crammed into about ten pages, including the prologue. While there is a "twist" in the last couple pages, it just made me roll my eyes harder.
OK, I love Slater's books. This was another riveting story and I could hardly put the book down. It was great right until the very end. I personally didn't like how it ended but that's just my opinion. Others might think it makes total sense. I felt not enough was said throughout the book about the teacher so to drag her into the plot at the end felt somehow like grasping for a twist. However, it was an exciting read all the way through. I just finished it yesterday so maybe I need another week to digest the ending and feel that it fits.
I had read K. L. Slater's "Finding Grace" and it proved to be suspenseful and intriguing, with a clear resolution at the end. The Closer was good until the ending--which was sudden and left the reader not knowing the ultimate outcome. The irony is in the name of the book; it can refer to proximity and closeness, or reference a person who brings something to a satisfactory conclusion. Unfortunately this book did not have a satisfactory ending, which was very disappointing. I know "life" is often like this, but a fictional book can reward the reader with proper closure.
The father was a flake did not put his daughter first. Very disappointing. The ending left you dangling and no mention of a sequel. This was the first book I have read from this author not sure I will read another if the themes of the characters are so weak.
Loved this book. The characters were interesting and ever-evolving. I felt there was a slight tendency toward repetition as it regarded the child's situation, but we learn the reason for this at the end. This novel shone a light on a devastating illness that is so misunderstood. I would definitely recommend this book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 30, 2018
This is the 7th K L Slater's book that I have read & love her books. I raced through this as it was a gripping story. I desperately wanted Joanne & Piper to get their comeuppance. I was soooooo frustrated when the book suddenly ended & was left disappointed not knowing what happened to Shaun. This needs a sequel. You can't just end a book like that. Very disappointed.
5.0 out of 5 starsGreat reading from start to end.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 8, 2018
I must say after reading some reviews from a few readers even K.S fans, I was preparing myself for an ending that may be a little disappointing. As I am a huge fan, this small number of comments didnt put me off buying the book. I have to say in my opinion the ending was really good. I personally hate long drawn out endings that feature loads of endless battles (physical or of wills). Of couse I was left with some conserns for some of the characters (no spoilsers from me). But it is a psycological thriller not a Mills and Boon and not all endings need to be tied up in a fluffy ribbon. For me from start to finish, this book is a 5! Keep them coming K.S please.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 24, 2018
I absolutely LOVED this book. It's fair to say I'm first in line when this author brings out a new psychological thriller and I devour them. This one was no exception and I would have to say is my new favourite of her books. From the very first page I was engaged and eager to know more. I already had questions to be answered. As I got to know Emma, Shaun, Jo and especially Maisie I found I couldn't put it down until I knew the final outcome. Some difficult subjects are covered in this book but they are explored sensitively, respectfully and knowledgeably. It broke my heart to watch ten year old Maisie's withdrawal following the break up of her parents marriage and there were characters I wanted to reach right into the story and strangle (Piper) which just shows the author's skill in forcing me to care so deeply about these characters. You will be intrigued, you will be captivated and you will be shocked in equal measure as this story hurtles along to the final, breathtaking conclusion. Totally recommended!
5.0 out of 5 starsAnother cracking story from Kim.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 12, 2018
I've read all of Kim's books so far and have really enjoyed every single one, this one being no exception. Kim has a way of writing characters that you may not necessarily like but you will care about, want to read about and know more about. That's not to say that I don't like any of her characters, I liked Emma and Maisie, Mum and daughter just trying to move on from a marriage separation and I really cared about them. This book follows their journey as Shaun the husband leaves the family home and starts a relationship with Joanne, Emma's boss and we also meet Joanne's spoilt and rather dislikeable daughter, Piper. This story covers some pretty hard hitting subjects & does it very well & sensitively, I wanted to shake Shaun at times for not noticing how his little girl was feeling and the changes within her. There's a curveball which I didn't see coming one iota that was very clever and the ending; well I'll leave you to make up your own minds on that. This is yet another fantastic, un-putdownable book by Kim and I eagerly await the next.
Emma and Shaun have decided to call time on their marriage. To make sure their ten-year-old daughter Maisie maintains a stable home life, they both agree to share their parental duties by continuing to live in the same house as friends. This arrangement initially works well, until Shaun meets and falls in love with Emma’s boss, Joanne. When he announces he intends to move in with her and her young daughter Piper, Maisie’s life suddenly becomes anything but stable.
At first, Emma finds working for her husband’s new partner awkward but then decides to try to make it work. Besides, her career is finally going well, and she is reluctant to jeopardise it just to satisfy her pride. So, despite her reservations, she agrees to Shaun’s request for Maisie to spend time with him, and his new family.
Unfortunately, things do not go according to Shaun’s plans. Not only does Maisie fail to bond with Joanne and Piper, but whenever she returns from spending time with them, her behaviour is noticeably different. Having previously been a happy and bubbly child, she is withdrawn, secretive and obviously losing weight.
Knowing her daughter better than anyone, Emma is convinced something bad is happening to Maisie. However, when she suggests Joanne and Piper may be the cause, Shaun refuses to acknowledge the possibility, putting it down to Emma’s usual neurotic tendencies. Determined to get to the bottom of her child’s rapidly declining health, Emma takes matters into her own hands and starts to delve into Joanne’s background.
On the surface, ‘Closer’ appears to be a study of one couple’s relationship breakdown and the effect it ultimately has on their child. However, it soon becomes clear it is so much more than that.
With so many skeletons emerging from the cupboards of both women, the story soon becomes a personal struggle between Emma and Joanne. Although Joanne has money and influence and is used to getting her own way, Emma is a worthy adversary. Fuelled by her love for Maisie, she eventually uncovers the truth Joanne has tried so hard to keep hidden. Unfortunately, Emma’s own past has been waiting in the wings and eventually comes back to haunt her.
‘Closer’ is a cleverly constructed story that, right to the end, holds all its cards tightly to its chest. The almost gladiatorial struggle between the two women is both engaging and gripping. Emma is neurotic and determined, driven by love for her daughter, while Joanne is ruthless, clever and calculating, always expecting to be on the winning side. The story’s resolution is definitely a surprise, and the final scene will make your blood run cold.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 29, 2018
''absolutely gripping thriller ''?? That's so far from the truth, I'm a massive Slater fan, but this book is her worst by far. nothing gripping about it and I skpped loads towards the end as quite frankly it was boring me but I always like to.know how it ends. There's nothing in this book that deserves the `gripping psychological thriller ` strapline. Vv disappointed with this one
4.0 out of 5 starsKim Slater Is The Best For Domestic Noir
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 1, 2019
'Closer' is another winner from Kim Slater, who has established herself as one of the foremost writers of domestic noir, the sort of psychological thrillers that are very much in vogue now.
Emma and her little daughter Maisie are devastated when husband Shaun deserts them to live with Joanne Dent and her daughter Piper. Joanne happens to be Emma's boss at the solicitors where Emma works as a paralegal.
The focus is very much on Maisie, who resents the visits to see her dad and Piper, who is an awful little girl, and also begins to be reluctant to visit the dance school she goes to. She tells Emma she has lost all her friends to Piper there. Not only that, Maisie is rapidly losing weight and not eating, as she sees herself as fat, and starts to develop anorexia.
The real truth was easy to work out, but there is a shock on the very last page, which leaves everything teasingly in the air.
A most enjoyable novel, the sort I wanted to return to frequently.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 24, 2018
Whenever I hear K L Slater has a new book out, I get excited as she always writes amazing books. Shaun and Emma are splitting up but living in the family home for the sake of their daughter. That is until he falls for Emma’s boss Jenny, Shaun then moves in very quickly with Jenny and her daughter Piper. Piper is the same age as Maisie, Emma and Shaun’s daughter. Things start going downhill for Emma and Maisie, in more ways than one. There are so many twists and turns throughout this story, which make it unputdownable. This is a gripping psychological thriller which had me on the edge of my seat. I would highly recommend this book.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 9, 2018
This is the third novel I’ve have read by this author, enjoyed the 2 others so much decided to look for more. However I thought this was not as good as previous novels I had read by her, but it was ok. The reason that I have not scored higher is down to a number of issues. Felt it was a little slow and repetitive in places, had to suspend belief as to the behaviour of some of the main characters and that ending let it down badly. I was annoyed with that the most.
For me this was the first time of reading this author’s work. I thoroughly enjoyed it and having just read some other reviews there are some points I agree with. I can’t imagine being so passive as Emma and as for the estranged husband - it surprises me that not one but two intelligent women fell for such a weak male who seems to care nothing for his own daughters feelings and is so unobservant he appears to never look at her to see what is happening in front of his eyes. Despite all this, I loved the book and was quite shocked at the ending. All in all a good read and I will certainly read her other books.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 19, 2019
This book is the most amazing story I have ever read!!. So many twists and turns right to the very end. If you like stories that captivate your imagination then this is the book for you. Sit down and start reading and see if you can figure out the plot. Who will you believe I wonder and will you be able to put this book down? This story will stay in your mind long after you've read it. Can't wait to read more of the books by this author.
2.0 out of 5 starsInteresting subject matter, but flat ending
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 4, 2019
I like K L Slater's books, but this was a disappointment. The story took too long to get going and the interesting subject matter was somewhat spoiled by repetition and lack of progression. The characters were mostly unlikeable and one dimensional. The book is a page turner as you want to get to the conclusion and see people get their deserved outcome. However, it is frustrating to watch the characters behaving in a manner that does not seem real i.e. visiting a Dr once about a child with an eating disorder and total parental inactivity in response to apparent bullying. The ending is completely disappointing, unbelievable, bordering on a pantomime villain and ultimately incomplete as it leaves the reader hanging with no conclusion.
The last paragraph of this book made me feel like a punch in the gut wow what a twisted ending ! This book.. honestly couldn't put down i needed to know the end it worked its way into my skin. not for a long time has a book got to me like this, I don't know if it's because i have a 10year old girl which made this story all the more scary, 5* i will be reading more from this author just need to get over this story first.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 19, 2019
I always enjoy Kim’s books but sadly couldn’t award more than 3 stars for this one, the seventh I have read. The main adult characters were barely credible in their responses to the various situations which arose. For me it became a fantasy rather than a psychological thriller. Unlike other readers whose reviews comment on the uncertainty of the ending, I thought it was crystal clear. But nonetheless disappointing.
I have read all KL Slater's other books and so bought this feeling confident it would be another great read. I found it boring. The story is annoyingly petty. The twist isnt much of a twist and is highly unrealistic. I read it to the end to see if anything exciting happened in the last couple of chapters, but to be honest, its something I might have enjoyed aged 13. I would recommend giving this a miss.