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Into the Darkest Corner Haynes, Elizabeth ( Author ) Jun-05-2012 Hardcover Hardcover – 5 Jun 2012


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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Harper (5 Jun 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062197258
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062197252
  • ASIN: B00DJZI2N0
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.3 x 23.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,671 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,843,479 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Elizabeth Haynes worked for many years as a police analyst. Her debut novel, Into the Darkest Corner, won Amazon's Book of the Year in 2011 and Amazon's Rising Star Award for debut novels.

Elizabeth grew up in Sussex and studied English, German and Art History at Leicester University. She is currently taking a career break having worked for the past seven years as a police intelligence analyst. Elizabeth now lives in Kent with her husband and son, and writes in coffee shops and a shed-office which takes up most of the garden. She is a regular participant in, and a Municipal Liaison for, National Novel Writing Month - an annual challenge to write 50,000 words in the month of November.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

425 of 437 people found the following review helpful By Laura Wilkinson on 7 Mar 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a rule I don't read crime or thrillers. It's not that I haven't enjoyed some (I have) it's simply that there's so much out there and only so much time. And I tend to be drawn to other genres.
However, I heard about this début on Twitter and I had to give it a go. I am SO glad that I did. It's fantastic. Many readers have said what a page turner it is, and I would whole-heartedly agree, but what makes this special is that we know from the outset that Lee is a bad 'un, that no good will come of Catherine's relationship with him, yet Haynes still manages to build almost unbearable tension as Catherine slips from good-time, confident girl to security obsessed, gibbering wreck and back again thanks to the love and concern of neighbour Stuart. Or does she?
The ambiguity of the ending was another thing I loved about this book. Just like the characters it felt real and all too believable. I've heard it said that many crime novels tie things up nicely at the end. That the bad get their just desserts and the good live happily ever after. And it is this deviation from the real world that lends them much of their appeal. With its first person, chatty narration, Into the Darkest Corner flows well and is easy to read. But it is not a comfortable read,and nor should it be. Prepare to be gripped, appalled and stunned. This is a fabulous début. Elizabeth Haynes has a crime convert in this reader. I look forward to her next.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Nicola F (Nic) TOP 500 REVIEWER on 17 Jan 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was an incredibly well written psychological thriller that looks at the impact an abusive relationship can have on its victim. It had me hooked right from the start and I couldn't put it down, reading it in one sitting. It is frightening and disturbing but there is nothing at all sensationalist about it, merely a chilling believability that will really make the reader think and a heightened sense of expectation that you just know something bad is going to happen.

This is a dual narrative story, telling of Cathy's life in 2003 whereby she meets Lee and back then is a confident, outgoing woman- and that of her life in 2007 when she has changed immeasurably. She is living alone and suffers from OCD and panic attacks, living in a constant state of fear. By alternating the chapters to both past and present, the reader learns just what has happened in Cathy's life to make her the person she is now, and just how damaging some relationships can really be.

As I've said, this was a very compelling read. As the narrative alternates between the past and the present, as a reader you come to understand exactly why Cathy is the way she is and just what her relationship with controlling Lee has done to her state of mind and personality. The contrast between bubbly, outgoing Cathy of 2003/2004 and the fraught, anxious state she is in 2007/2008 is a real eye-opener. The characters are very well crafted and utterly believable- particularly as hidden dark sides are slowly unveiled as the twists and turns of the story unfold. The author has clearly carried out a lot of detailed research into her subject matter and should be commended for it.
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173 of 182 people found the following review helpful By Bookworm on 13 Feb 2011
Format: Paperback
Having felt a bit confused by the first three apparently unconnected changes in time, (over the first three or four pages) I suddenly realised how the time-shifts functioned and from then on I was utterly gripped by this wonderful thriller. I basically devoured it in two days, and then went back to read it a second time straight away, able now to take it more slowly and enjoy the crafting of the narrative, which is beautifully put together, and very clever.

I don't want to risk any spoilers, so won't talk about plot at all. You just need to read it. But be warned - at times this is a seriously scary book - if you read it late at night, do check the locks on the doors and windows before you settle down.
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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Ruby on 27 April 2012
Format: Paperback
The book opens with in May 2005, with a transcript of a scene set in Lancaster Crown Court. Lee Brightman is giving evidence against Catherine who he says had some emotional problems and was violent towards him. He confesses he did hit her, once in `self defence'. At once we have a sense of how their relationship ended. The author then cleverly weaves Catherine's story between two timeframes: her time with Brightman in 2003/4 and later in 2007/8.

Catherine, pre Lee, is vivacious and outgoing and anything but a victim and her descent into a life abuse and isolation is shocking and so believable. She is reduced to a lonely, terrified woman with OCD and PTS, constantly in thrall to her checking the security of her home and restricting her life. As a reader you engage with Catherine right from the beginning as she talks about her compulsive need to check the locks on the door to her flat over and over again whilst acknowledging how ridiculous it is.

Gritty, tense, compulsive reading, you actually can feel your anxiety grow as you read certain passages and you have no idea how this will end. The pacing is superb with the author slowly building a feeling of unease, tension and suspense until you are almost as wound up as Catherine.

This is an edgy and powerful first novel, utterly convincing in its portrayal of obsession, and a tour de force of suspense.

One of my books of the year
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