The Girl Before by JP Delaney is calling me like a siren from my TBR and I am delighted to be part of the launch celebrations for this thriller. Usually I have no idea which books an author might bring along to stay in with me to chat about on Linda’s Book Bag but this time I knew it would be The Girl Before and I’m so excited to share that conversation with you.
The Girl Before is published Quercus and is available for purchase here.
The Girl Before
Enter the world of One Folgate Street and discover perfection . . . but can you pay the price?
Jane stumbles on the rental opportunity of a lifetime: the chance to live in a beautiful ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect, on condition she abides by a long list of exacting rules. After moving in, she discovers that a previous tenant, Emma, met a mysterious death there – and starts to wonder if her own story will be a re-run of the girl before.
As twist after twist catches the reader off guard, Emma’s past and Jane’s present become inexorably entwined in this tense, page-turning portrayal of psychological obsession.
Staying in with JP Delaney
Welcome to Linda’s Book Bag JP. Thank you for agreeing to stay in with me.
Tell me, which of your books have you brought along to share this evening and why have you chosen it?
I’ve brought along The Girl Before. It’s my first psychological thriller, although I have written other books in other genres.
What can we expect from an evening in with The Girl Before?
What drew me to this genre most was the way it’s not really a genre at all, in the sense that there’s no formula and no rules. Characters, too, have the freedom to be dark and twisted as well as likeable and virtuous – sometimes all four at once. The only requirement, really, is a strong idea and a plot that grips you and won’t let go. So that’s what I’ve tried to achieve with this book – to write something that’s hopefully original, unusual, believable, but above all readable.
Sounds just my kind of read. I’m so pleased The Girl Before is firmly on my TBR.
What else have you brought along and why?
Well, I’m going to break your rules a little and bring along absolutely nothing. You see, the book is set in a minimalist house, owned by the architect who built it – he rents it out at an affordable price to people who agree to live in it just as he intended, following over two hundred exacting rules, from ‘no clothes left out of cupboards’ to ‘no ornaments and no pictures on the walls’. Would-be applicants have to fill in a lengthy application form that starts with the words, ‘Please make a list of every possession you consider essential to your life.’
(Wow – what a thought!)
The story follows two women, Emma and Jane, who each rent the house, three years apart. Each starts a relationship with the architect; each discovers that the previous tenant of the house died there in suspicious circumstances; and each starts to wonder if their own story is a re-run of the girl before.
(Right! I’m bumping up The Girl Before to the top of my TBR immediately! This sounds brilliant.)
So, while I’m with you tonight, we’re going to chuck out everything. Those sofas? Edward Monkford doesn’t believe in sofas: they make people slouch. That carpet? He doesn’t allow any patterns in his house. That cat you’ve got curled up on the cushion? No pets allowed. And cushions are a complete no-no. The house is as sleekly sparse and austere as a monk’s cell. You can pour a glass of wine, and make a snack, but make sure the bottle is put back in the cupboard and the empty glass is washed up and put away as soon as you’ve used it.
(I feel quite weak at the thought of this. A house without cats! Impossible.)
Thanks so much for staying in with me JP to tell me about The Girl Before. I’m off to tidy away the washing up – I suppose our wine glasses had better be put away in height order too!
About JP Delaney
JP Delaney is a pseudonym for a writer who has previously written best-selling fiction under other names. The Girl Before is the first novel of psychological suspense from JP Delaney. It is being published in the US and UK in January 2017, with subsequent editions in over 35 countries. It is being published in the US and UK in January 2017, with subsequent editions in over 35 countries. A film version is being brought to the screen by Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard.
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