Thursday, June 4, 2015

Disclaimer: A Novel by Renée Knight

Whoa, Nelly! Talk about a book that keeps you up all night.  I kindled this book Saturday and didn't stop reading until early Sunday.  I just could not put it down for anything!  It was the epitome of a suspense-filled, psychological thriller - which I am becoming a huge fan of lately.  Disclaimer had me hooked all the way through and I loved every minute of it - even when I started biting my nails in anticipation of what would happen next.  It was that good!

So, what it is about?  A book and a secret.  Yep, a book is the culprit of this story. Its pretty crazy how powerful words can be - to the point that they wreck a marriage, a family, a life.  In this story we have Catherine, a documentary filmmaker who lives with her attorney husband.  They have just moved into a smaller home, after giving their twenty-five year old son the boot.  Catherine felt he needed to be an adult, get a job, and move out - so he did.  And now she is unpacking their new house and setting it up.  She finds herself reading a new book she found at home and enjoying it until she realizes that the book is about her.  Its about a horrible secret that she has kept quiet for years.  A secret that she never wanted anyone to find out - especially her husband.  Except, now someone else knows her secret and they have written a book about it.  What can that mean?  Why are they doing this to her?  How can she keep anyone from finding out that she is the woman in the book?  The more she thinks about the book and her secret, the more she unravels.  Her husband thinks she's depressed and needs to get back to work on a new film to keep her busy.  Catherine agrees with him, but she's only pretending.  Inside, she is screaming with fear and anger.  And then one day her son stops by for a visit and sees the book.  He's read it.  Apparently someone left him a copy of it at his job.  Catherine is unsettled by this news and knows that she must figure out who is trying to ruin her life through this book.  The more we read about Catherine, the more we struggle to understand why she is adamant about keeping her secret. 

Alongside Catherine's story is her tormentor's story.  Through alternating chapters and time jumps we become privy to a man Stephen.  He's a retired teacher who has made it his mission to destroy Catherine's life - figuratively and literally.   Why?  Well, after his wife passed away he stumbled upon an old handbag of hers filled with provocative photos that shocked him.  Upon further investigation he finds a manuscript.  What he reads shocks him to the core.  So he decides to seek vengeance for the lives that Catherine ruined.  And that is how all of the DRAMA begins.

Talk about feeling torn!  I didn't know who to believe, who to root for.  I found myself conflicted.  Was Catherine really as innocent as she claimed?  Or was she guilty of some hideous crime? The more I read, the more I found myself guessing what type of secret was being kept in the dark.  I found myself bewildered at times and eager to find out what fate awaited Catherine.  And then the secret was revealed and I was horrified.  A rush of emotions surged through me and I couldn't stop biting my nails as I continued reading. Talk about the unexpected.

Disclaimer is a book that I could not stop thinking about after I'd finished reading it.  I kept thinking about secrets and lies - they really can destroy lives.  The ease with which someone can manipulate a story and bend the truth to their own liking - its rather twisted.  This book was such a thought-provoking read.  I absolutely LOVED it!  Knight has written a terrific mystery-suspense story with Disclaimer.  Its chock full of unlikeable and unreliable characters; a mystery that is unsolvable; and a story that is unputdownable.  It is a MUST-READ!!  I would most definitely recommend this book to fans of mystery-suspense novels - you will LOVE this book!

And now, I'm off to continue reading Finders Keepers by Stephen King.  Its such a good read so far - I'm loving it!  Happy reading!!


Meredith said...

Off to check my library right now,

A Bookish Way of Life said...

M, you will definitely LOVE this one - it is so good! Let me know what you think :)

Vintage Reading said...

I picked this up in Waterstones last week and then put it down again, darn! Will wait for the paperback as I've blown my hardback budget for this year!

A Bookish Way of Life said...

Vintage Reading - definitely get it in paperback when you get the chance! I kindled it, but am going to buy it in paperback when it comes out. I'm trying to stick to a hardback budge as well - but its so hard with so many good books! I love Waterstones! When I lived in England I would go there all the time just to see what books were on the 3 for 2 table. Such a great bookshop!!

Lindsey said...

I don't read a lot of mysteries, but I've read a few lately and I see how they can be addicting! I love the idea of finding a book about yourself. It reminds me a bit of that book The Accident that came out a few years ago. I will definitely be looking for this one!

A Bookish Way of Life said...

Lindsey, I've become a fan of mysteries lately (especially cozy mysteries) - they are my go-to when I'm itching for a new book to read, but unsure of what I want to read. This book was definitely a HIT for me. I remember that Pavone book - I love his work and thought that was a really good one! I think you'll definitely enjoy this one if you liked The Accident.