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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best seller

In the tradition of The Girl on the Train, The Woman in Cabin 10, and Gone Girl comes an enthralling psychological thriller that spins one woman's seemingly good fortune and another woman's mysterious fate through a kaleidoscope of duplicity, death, and deception. 

Soon to be a major motion picture directed by Ron Howard. 

Please make a list of every possession you consider essential to your life. 

The request seems odd, even intrusive - and for the two women who answer, the consequences are devastating. 

Emma 

Reeling from a traumatic break-in, Emma wants a new place to live. But none of the apartments she sees are affordable or feel safe. Until One Folgate Street. The house is an architectural masterpiece: a minimalist design of pale stone, plate glass, and soaring ceilings. But there are rules. The enigmatic architect who designed the house retains full control: no books, no throw pillows, no photos or clutter or personal effects of any kind. The space is intended to transform its occupant - and it does. 

Jane 

After a personal tragedy, Jane needs a fresh start. When she finds One Folgate Street, she is instantly drawn to the space - and to its aloof but seductive creator. Moving in, Jane soon learns about the untimely death of the home's previous tenant, a woman similar to Jane in age and appearance. As Jane tries to untangle truth from lies, she unwittingly follows the same patterns, makes the same choices, crosses paths with the same people, and experiences the same terror as the girl before. 

Praise for The Girl Before

“Dazzling, startling, and above all cunning - a pitch-perfect novel of psychological suspense.” (Lee Child)

The Girl Before generates a fast pace.... [J. P.] Delaney intersperses ethics questions on stand-alone pages throughout the book.... The single most ingenious touch is that we’re not provided either woman’s answers.” (The New York Times)

“J. P. Delaney builds the suspense.” (Vanity Fair)

“Immediate guarantee: You will not be able to put this book down.... Fans of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train will realize that there’s not only more where that came from, but it’s also more thrilling.” (American Booksellers Association)

©2017 J. P. Delaney (P)2017 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"JP Delaney's intricate psychological thriller immediately entangles us, and the gifted narrators keep us spellbound.... Finty Williams is vital and convincing delineating Emma's unreliable persona, and Emilia Fox offers a sympathetic, intelligent Jane as she uncovers what really happened to The Girl Before. Absolutely riveting." (AudioFile)

"Riveting.... Writing with precision and grace, Delaney strips away the characters' secrets until the raw truth of each is revealed." (Publishers Weekly

"A masterfully crafted spellbinder...guaranteed to astonish." (Booklist

What listeners say about The Girl Before

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Amateur thriller with uninteresting characters

I was quite intrigued by this but was left very disappointed. The characters all seem very one dimensional and little to no redeeming features. It’s hard to understand why they do what they do. Very little context or backstory. The character of Emma is infuriating. Edward is despicable. It’s hard to feel any sympathy for any of true characters in the end. The story itself is fast paced and engaging. Performances are okay. Nothing great. I’d skip this one. Maybe watch the movie when it’s made.

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First J.P. Delaney book for me..

First book I’ve ever read of J.P. Delaney and I know it won’t be my last... picked me up into the whirlwind of its plot and the side by side time frames made it fun but sometimes I found myself having to rewind if I missed who was narrating that moment. But story made me just want to keep going.. like an ending you can sense, the answers are coming... 👍🏻 awesome

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jawdroppingly good!

could barely put it down! First thing i thought of when i woke up, last thing before i went to sleep. Best book ive read (heard) in a long time!

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Amazing! Kept me on the edge of my seat!

Loved the narration and cadence of this thriller with the past and present becoming one. Couldn't wait for the next chapter!

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Great mystery and thriller!

Loved this story, definitely kept my interest the entire time. Would have liked 2 separate voices for the separate characters to be a little clearer. A new refreshing story that still manages to surprise and keep you guessing!

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A Thriller That Deserves To Be Noticed

The Girl Before captured my attention from the first page. The plot thickens with many twists and turns in the story. As soon as you think you have it figured out, you are once again surprised!

I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed Gone Girl, The Woman in the Window, or The Couple Next Door. Or, if you like this one, listen to those next!

#Audible1

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  • Emily
  • 2018-02-08

Like someone tried to polish an old turd

Any additional comments?

The narrarators tried their best and you have to give them credit- the story is absolute garbage. I hated each of the main characters almost as much as the last and was anticipating all of them to be murdered. Even that was a let down.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Lisa
  • 2017-05-07

Great Story

After the first couple of chapters I thought this was really going to have a stupid ending. But that was just building the story. As the story progresses you get pulled in. Every time you think you know who did it, another piece of evidence pops up so you think it is someone else. I was completely surprised at the end. If you like suspense, this is a great book.

45 people found this helpful

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  • Linda Wanitschek
  • 2017-05-07

Never do I want a fully automated home. Wow!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

incredible concept. At the beginning, it felt like they were competing for the house, but no the twist unveils. Then it unveils the darkness again. spellbinding. great juxtapositions
In the dark until the end. Not many books keep the ending secret for so long.

Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

Emma was truly intriguing. How she manipulated and turn the details her way. fabulous voice changes.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

In many moments, I was shocked, upset, calmed, and then shocked, upset and calmed again. fantastic unveiling of the details. very creative and fresh.

Any additional comments?

I actually had to sit in the parking lot at work and was late a couple times because I couldn't stop listening.

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  • Virginia
  • 2017-02-02

No, No, No

I thought Gone Girl was well written and had a nice believable little sadistic twist that made it awkwardly fun. Girl on the train, I liked because of the charters and although the ending was predictable the angst created by the writer was well done. Maybe I'm starting to just get over all the "girl in the title" books, or maybe this one just isn't very good. To be honest, I had trouble finishing it. The narration is good, but the story had a forced creepiness that just didn't work. the characters are unlikeable, and not in a way that makes you want to read or listen. An example (semi spoiler warning), one of the girls is violently raped and is extremely traumatized (as one would expect), then just a few pages later makes comments and commits acts that just don't fit (not even in a deranged way). I have to admit I'm not into the Fifty Shades of anything books, or any book with gratuitous language or violent sex, so maybe that's why I really don't understand this one. And the ending didn't make up for any of the books flaws. I say save your money or credit because this one, for me, isn't worth your time or money. That's just my two cents worth.

171 people found this helpful

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  • Grant Fieldgrove
  • 2017-03-29

A unique kind of awful

A unique kind of awful. This might very well be the worst book I have ever read. The strange thing is, usually when I dislike a book, I stop reading/listening and choose something else. This book, however, was so unbelievably awful that I couldn't make myself stop. I had to see how much worse is got and I was really really rooting for every single character to die a horrible death.
The two women characters are both dumber than a bag of rocks and the main male character is so terrible that there is no way either of these women would want him, let alone both. I was hoping he would end up murdering them both, then some random character like Jason Voorhees showing up at the 11th hour and killing him. That's how bad the book is, I daydreamed about the characters being murdered.
Add in some sex talk with words like c*** and Daddy, and you've got a nice, flaming crap cocktail. I even wanted the stupid house to explode!
I'm curious to find out who the author really is, because it has to be someone with their foot already in the door. There is no way this book impressed someone so much as to offer this person a contract. Someone's daughter or lover who was blackmailing people... Something! I refuse to believe this crap got published based on its merits alone.
And what the hell is Ron Howard doing with this? His movies have been some real stinkers lately, but this is bottom of the barrel. This will make the Grinch look Oscar worthy.
AVOID AT ALL COST!!!

45 people found this helpful

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  • Simone
  • 2017-02-21

Gave up after they ate live fish

No likeable characters. I was just thinking " oh, just kill them already":). I couldn't even finish.

83 people found this helpful

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  • LBM
  • 2018-02-12

Blech

1 Folgate Street is the stark contemporary, uber-specified house that brings together a string of really unhealthy people. In exchange for reduced rent, tenants must legally agree to abide by austere rules and living arrangements. These stipulations have been created by the world-renowned architect who designed and obsessed over the construction of the unusual creation -- and only he decides who will be granted a lease to live there. The author, Tony Strong (a.k.a. J.P. Delaney) could have had a good, thrilling theme to work with right there, but instead he created what seemed like endless sub-themes which delved into the dark corners of the female tenants minds and dysfunctional lives. Normally, that would be swell, but instead I found that the "insight" seemed to revel in rather perverted, unrelatable and insultingly stereotypical portraits of your usual, run-of-mill "messed up" women. Alarmed at what I was hearing, I actually googled the author and...well of course it was written by a man. But. Of. Course.

If you're a fan of "Fifty Shades of No Self-Respect" and enjoy a peek inside the minds of some seriously damaged women (and men - but mainly women), then this is the book for you. The author is certainly no Gillian Flynn. That is for sure.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Elizabeth
  • 2017-07-07

It could have been great

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The narration of this book was great, no complaints there. The story, however promising it could have been, was unrealistic and shallow. This book had the slowest build, and the fastest fall. The last 90 minutes of the book, seemed thrown together . I felt like the author was told, "you need more twists and turns", so they were thrown in at the last minute without any proper unraveling, which left you scratching your head.

14 people found this helpful

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  • Karenique
  • 2020-05-24

Brilliant! Exceptional! A creepy and suspenseful thriller.

I love my British thrillers and this one proves why. “The Girl Before” began right away with an exhilarating and dazzling start. This unusual and addictive tale kept me hooked throughout. Author J.P. Delaney’s creative writing shines through. Focusing on two women who take turns from chapter to chapter had me so engrossed I found it hard to take a break. Narration by the three narrators are superior. My first book by Delaney and it certainly won’t be my last. I highly recommend this audiobook with 🍒🍒🍒 on top. I want more. Epic I say. EPIC!!!
✍🏻👏🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟👏🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟👏🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟👏✍🏻

5 people found this helpful

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  • Chris
  • 2017-02-02

Quit Comparing Everything to Girl On the Train/ Gone Girl

I don't understand all the hype associated with this novel. I hear a motion picture has already been optioned. Why?
2 women separated by a small amount of time both were residents of 1 Folgate street. It is a house like no other but one of innovation and possibly the future of homes across the world. But first they have to sign their lives over in order to get this amazing house at an affordable price. Regardless of concerns both "then" Emma and "now" Jane sign and allow their lives to be on full display.
You find out rather early what happened to "then" Emma. But as the story unraveled I can say honestly none of it was surprising. Even after the climax it ends with a dud.
A warning to any animal lovers like myself you will find certain sections of this book disturbing.

I am glad for the good listen guarantee as I will be taking advantage of this shortly after I have submitted this review.

28 people found this helpful