I remember reading a comment on Goodreads about Ruth Ware becoming the Agatha Christie of our times and I cannot agree more. Ruth Ware’s books are eerie page-turners that have kept me up till the wee hours of the night reading till my eyes were bloodshot and my mind was reeling. I love psychological thrillers and murder mysteries and I have found that Ruth Ware’s writing has a creepy tone that keeps readers on the edge of their seats. You just feel that something is horribly wrong and something bad will happen. You also find yourself asking many questions throughout the book: Can you trust this character? Can you really trust any character? Who is the murderer? What in the world is going on? Ruth Ware, how do you come up with this stuff? Yep, many questions!
The Death of Mrs. Westaway
One for sorrow
Two for joy
Three for a girl
Four for a boy
Five for silver
Six for gold
Seven for a secret
Never to be told
First off, Ruth Ware’s newest release has the most intriguing cover. Just looking at the black and white cover with the intricate gate filled with magpies and cobwebs was enough to grab my interest.
The novel introduces us to Harriet Westaway, a young woman struggling to make ends meet ever since her mother passed away. Harriet is a tarot reader who has the eye for observing human behaviour and figuring out the reason why people visit her. When a loan shark threatens to turn Harriet’s life upside down, she turns to what appears to be her only hope: a mysterious letter addressed to her stating that she has come into an inheritance left by her grandmother, Mrs. Westaway. The problem: Mrs. Westaway is not her grandmother. Harriet decides that life has knocked her down enough and that money can be her turning point. She embarks on the journey to her “grandmother’s” funeral and starts working her cunning plan to convince the family members that she is part of their family. Things take a dark turn as Harriet’s lies get out of hand and as she gets pulled deeper into the family secrets. She starts realizing something sinister is at the heart of their house and past.
The description of the creepy mansion fit into the storyline so well. The image of the cold, worn down home filled with secrets was so vivid in my mind. The feeling that everyone in this book was up to no good overwhelmed me. I questioned the characters motive and analyzed their behaviour with each turn of the page. I can tell you that I did not see that twist coming in the end. I finished this book in a day and I think I was so wrapped up in what I just read that I could not process what I felt for a couple of days. All I can say is, this is a Ruth Ware novel so be prepared for the creepy factor and a lot of suspense!
The Woman in Cabin 10:
“What was going to happen to me? There were only two possibilities—they were going to let me go at some point. Or they were going to kill me.”
When travel writer Lo Blacklock gets an assignment aboard a luxury cruise, she believes she has scored not only a big step in her career but some much needed time away from the drama of her own life. She soon realizes that this voyage will be anything but relaxing and more of her own personal nightmare. When Lo believes she witnessed a murder aboard the ship, she tries her best to convince the cruise staff of what she thinks happened. However, nobody seems to believe her and everyone is accounted for on the ship. There is no evidence of foul play and Lo eventually begins to question her own sanity. The biggest question: Who is the woman in cabin 10? This book had me questioning my own sanity as I kept trying to find answers to my questions or predict what would happen. Of course all my predictions were wrong, but I enjoyed how the mystery unravelled. Another hit by Ruth Ware!
In a Dark, Dark Wood:
“There was something strangely naked about it, like we were on a stage set, playing our parts to an audience of eyes out there in the wood.”
What happens when you take a couple of women with a past and place them in a dark and deserted cottage in the woods for a bachelorette weekend? Nothing good that’s for sure! Another eerie story about how lies and secrets from a decade earlier unravel in the most unexpected and horrifying way. I was quite shocked by how this story took a turn in a direction that I was not expecting. This book was a quick read for me and was perfect for those long commutes to and from work. Just make sure you are paying attention to your bus stop (learn from my mistakes folks).
In a Nutshell:
If you are looking to get swept away by a book then Ruth Ware is the way to go. I would take The Woman in Cabin 10 on vacation and I would read The Death of Mrs. Westaway on a rainy day snuggled up in a blanket and a cup of tea. Either way, you cannot go wrong. They are the kind of books you will read fast because you need answers to your questions.