16 November, 2017


Title: A stranger in the house
Author: Shari Lapena
Series: -
Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Fiction
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Release: August 15th 2017
Source: Audiobook
Pages: 305

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He looks at her, concerned. “How do you feel?” She wants to say, Terrified. Instead, she says, with a faint smile, “Glad to be home.”

Karen and Tom Krupp are happy—they’ve got a lovely home in upstate New York, they’re practically newlyweds, and they have no kids to interrupt their comfortable life together. But one day, Tom returns home to find Karen has vanished—her car’s gone and it seems she left in a rush. She even left her purse—complete with phone and ID—behind.

There's a knock on the door—the police are there to take Tom to the hospital where his wife has been admitted. She had a car accident, and lost control as she sped through the worst part of town.

The accident has left Karen with a concussion and a few scrapes. Still, she’s mostly okay—except that she can’t remember what she was doing or where she was when she crashed. The cops think her memory loss is highly convenient, and they suspect she was up to no good.

Karen returns home with Tom, determined to heal and move on with her life. Then she realizes something’s been moved. Something’s not quite right. Someone’s been in her house. And the police won't stop asking questions.

Because in this house, everyone’s a stranger. Everyone has something they’d rather keep hidden. Something they might even kill to keep quiet.

EXPECTATIONS: This book was part of Spookathon Readathon hosted by BooksandLala and was a pick for everybody to read together. I am always down for mystery books and so I was super glad to jumped onto this train.

THE WORLD: Just as we know it. It focuses also more on upper class suburbs which I think is pretty standard setting for thrillers. Nothing really exceptional. It also has this whole men work and women stay at home setting. Yes women do have a part time job of some kind but man is the main provider. I am personally not a fan of such dynamic but I guess it is very easy to write and very handy for the plot. 

CHARACTERS: Karen and Tom Krupp are a happily married couple that are also our main characters. Well happily is not exactly true because as every couple they also have domestic problems but nothing serious, at least at first glance. Basically the story is about an accident and Karen having a post accident amnesia and then she is apparently accused of being on murder scene and basically things go backwards from there as detectives try to figure out what happened. I am not a fan of neither Karen nor Tom. But let's start with Tom first. For me he was pretty spineless and lacked depth huge time. It's not like I wanted to know more about him but his personality...it was really boring and flat. There was just nothing there, a 2D image. Karen is made to look this distressed shy wife who struggles to remember what happened. Again, it was a bit too much I think to make it believable. And then there is this neighbor woman that I forgot the name of. I know we not supposed to like her but I think she was the only character in this book that actually had depth. I am not saying I did like her. It's just that she felt real. In general for the likeness, it's a domestic thriller so I don't think we are really expected to like any characters. 

ROMANCE: Basically Karen and Tom are married so there is a bit of romance there. But it is a very domestic romance. Other than that there is cheating and obsessive disorders. So no that fluffy cute romance we usually see in contemporary books. But frankly for the domestic thriller this was perfect, no focus on romance is one of the reasons why I love them so much. Well okay not love but like a lot. 

GOOD: I don't think it is a horrible book but I cannot really pin point anything that was exceptionally good. The villain? Hmm nope, I mean yeah maybe but I have a very serious sexism issues with that. And the final twist? Well...I liked it when I was reading the book but in the end now that I think about it, nope just nope.

BAD: Okay so I already mentioned that I have serious issues with sexist representation in this book. There is a woman in the book who is obsessed about a man to the point where she does anything to get other woman out of the picture. I am really really tired to always seeing a woman being put in this role. We all know that in reality men are much more likely to stalk women so why in books it is always women who are given this horrible role? When women get obsessed about somebody they don't get violent, they get depressed and maybe do some internet stalking but they do not creep around your windows and do not follow you in the street in the dark. They do not get violent as much as men do. So please can we remember this when it is used in the books? 

Another thing I did not like was the final ending. Like what? Why? It's like when you read the whole book about amazing adventure and then final page says that the character woke up and it was all just a dream. You do not laugh at the reader like this, it is just plain mean. 

OVERALL: I think it was okay but I agree with pretty much everybody who read the book - it is only okayish. 

What do you think about A STRANGER IN THE HOUSE?



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