The Stranger Upstairs by Melanie Raabe
Many thanks to The House of Anansi for the advanced copy of this one - all opinions are my own.
What more could you want from a story than complete, unrelenting tension and creepiness to the point that you are nearly terrified to find out what is going to happen? That, in a nutshell, is The Stranger Upstairs - this absolute rollercoaster that makes you question everything you thought you could trust.
Synopsis: Seven years ago Sarah's husband Philip went missing without a trace. Until today when her phone has finally brought the news she has been waiting on all along - Philip has been found and is coming home. Except the Philip that steps off the plane is not her husband, he is a complete stranger, and no one is going to believe you.
To say that I could not put this down is an understatement - I LITERALLY could not stop reading this, I simply HAD to know where this one would land. It did not disappoint in any way - every single spine tingling and unnerving twist and turn landed me squarely at a destination I never saw coming. I loved it. This book moves fast, literally over the course of a matter of days, and the writing style and short chapters are perfect for keeping you flying through.
Melanie Raabe also has an uncanny ability to write a character that you can identify with thoroughly - every moment of unease, fear and panic that Sarah felt, I felt. I wanted her to get this stranger out of her life just as badly as she did. Which in turn made this an exhilarating read from page one. To think that one day your missing husband would come home to you, only to have a stranger show up in your home, and a menacing stranger who seems intent on harming you in some way, would be any person’s worst nightmare. Not to mention, not having a single person believe you - and believe you to be the crazy on in the process. I could completely relate to Sarah, both the mounting panic that something was horribly wrong, and the determination to figure out who the hell this person was, so focused on taking over your husband’s life.
I loved that this was unique and twisting and dark and a wonderfully fresh take on the mystery thriller. Not often does a book truly surprise me, but I must say, this one did.
This is the perfect read moving into longer autumn nights - it will be sure to keep you up way past your bedtime.