35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
Superb, thoughtful modern thriller,
This review is from: Into the Darkest Corner (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Told from the point of the view of a female victim, this first novel is utterly gripping, extremely well told and considerably more detailed and textured than the typical crime thriller.
The story seems to peer behind a typical local news story, the type of two-minute item which says that 'a man was sentenced to three years for assaulting his girlfriend' without going into any depth. In 'Into the Darkest Corner' Elizabeth Haynes has examined how a young woman could enter into a destructive, controlling relationship, and what might happen to her in the years after it ends. So far as the public is concerned, a trial and conviction might be the end of the matter, but for the protagonist of this book it's just part of her personal, horrible journey.
The narrative is split into two timelines which is a confusing device at first, but you soon become used to the action jumping between 'then' and 'now'. The plot and characters would have worked fine without using this slightly artifical style of writing, but the juxtaposition of the heroine's original character and behaviour alongside her current incarnation is artfully intelligent and underlines the catastrophic effect of the ordeal she has undergone.
The author's depiction of obessive-compulsive disorder is also masterful. For those lucky folk who have no neurosis or hang-ups, the description of the girl feeling forced to check, and re-check and check again that her door is secured should give some insight into what it's like to lose control over your own destiny, actions and intellect.
And if all that sounds very up itself and worthy, don't be put off in any way. 'Into the Darkest Corner' works on many levels -- it's a rip-roaring page-turner even if the psychological stuff doesn't ring your bells. An amazingly accomplished first novel. Definitely an author to watch.