Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do.
You’d like to get to know Grace better.
But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.
Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.
Every now and then I pick up a book that blows me away when I’m least expecting it, and my god Behind Closed Doors certainly did just that. It is one of the most uncomfortable psychological thrillers that I have read in a long while. Jack and Grace appear to be the “perfect” couple, but appearances can be deceptive. From the opening chapter where Jack and Grace host a dinner party for friends, it soon becomes clear that something is not quite right about their relationship, everything about them is just too good to be true. It soon becomes very apparent that the relationship between Jack and Grace is very different to the one they would have people believe.
I really can’t say too much about this book without giving too much away. It’s pretty obvious from the books description it’s about some form of abusive relationship, but even so I wasn’t prepared for just how dark and intense Jack and Graces relationship became. Grace goes from a confident career woman to someone who is a shadow of herself, she is timid and appears weak, but due to the nature of her abuse it’s hardly surprising. Her relationship with her younger sister Millie who has Down’s syndrome is endearing and heart warming. Grace will do anything to protect her sister from Jack, who has dark and sinister plans for her once she moves in with them.
Behind Closed Doors jumps between the past and present, giving the reader a deeper insight into why Grace fell for Jack in the first place, and how she finds herself in her current situation. Jack seems the perfect husband, but his true colours are revealed almost as soon as they are married. Jack is the most complex protagonist, to his friends he’s a successful lawyer, a good friend and a wonderful husband, but to Grace he’s manipulative, cruel and controls every aspect of her life. There were times when the futility of Grace’s situation made me feel emotionally drained, her panic and fear were tangible and so expertly expressed by B.A Paris.
Although an uncomfortable read at times I throughly enjoyed Behind Closed Doors, it had all the elements that make a good psychological thriller, a realistic plot, twist and turns, with a nail biting ending! From the first page to the last I was so emotionally involved in this book I felt physically and mentally drained by the time I got to the last page. B.A Paris manages to deal with the difficult subject of abuse sensitively, and without the need to overdramatise events. what’s really scary and a question I asked myself many times after reading this book “do we really know what goes on Behind Closed Doors to friends, family members and neighbours? ” and the answer has to be a resounding “no”. I absolutely loved every dark twisted page of Behind Closed Doors, as you may have guessed by now, if you haven’t read it yet, all I can say is “why not?”
Behind Closed Doors is B.A Paris debut novel, which I find astounding. Her writing, plot and characters are of such a high caliber, I was convinced that she must have written other books, I even googled her to check if this was the case! I will certainly be looking forward to her next book with baited breath.
5☕️☕️☕️☕️☕️ out of 5 from me
Publishers: MIRA 11th Feb. 2016