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Safe House Hardcover – 2 Aug 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 3,404 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; Main edition (2 Aug. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571290639
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571290635
  • Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 3.7 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3,404 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 612,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Chris Ewan soars to a new level with this dark, absorbing thriller. It combines a tense emotional switchback with an expertly controlled narrative and characters you care about. Chris Ewan is an author to watch and enjoy.' --Andrew Taylor

'Ewan has added a sprinkling of edible gold dust and elevated the everyman thriller into a compelling, contemporary read . . . SAFE HOUSE is an exciting, well crafted thriller, with flashes of real humour and insight. Ewan writes exceptionally well, especially in the first person.' --S. J. Bolton

'SAFE HOUSE is a highly original, deftly written thriller it's where you never want to find yourself, a near-surreal descent into brutal mayhem as an ordinary life unravels. And Rebecca Lewis is a new heroine for our times she's armed and dangerous, full of chutzpah and with the guts of a marine.' --Anne Zouroudi

'A modern twist on the classic old-fashioned British thriller with a compelling narrative as pacy as the TT itself.' --Caro Ramsay

'A high-octane thriller . . . Proceeding at warp speed with plenty of twists and excellent use of its setting, SAFE HOUSE is a terrific holiday read.' --Laura Wilson, GUARDIAN

'Clever nail-biter that reveals the Isle of Man to be a Heart of Darkness.' --DAILY TELEGRAPH

'[An] excellent thriller by [a] rising star. SAFE HOUSE by Chris Ewan is set on an Isle of Man as you never imagined it and has one of the best new heroines for a long time ... Popular fiction at its best.' --Susan Hill, The Spectator Books of the Year

'Ewan keeps the twists coming . . . Rob and Rebecca are engaging company during this ride-by-the-seat-of-your-pants novel.' --Independent on Sunday

'A high-octane thriller . . . Proceeding at warp speed with plenty of twists and excellent use of its setting, SAFE HOUSE is a terrific holiday read.' --Laura Wilson, GUARDIAN

'Clever nail-biter that reveals the Isle of Man to be a Heart of Darkness.' DAILY TELEGRAPH

'Ewan keeps the twists coming . . . Rob and Rebecca are engaging company during this ride-by-the-seat-of-your-pants novel.' --Independent on Sunday

Review

'A high-octane thriller ... Proceeding at warp speed with plenty of twists and excellent use of its setting, Safe House is a terrific [listen].' (The Guardian)

'[An] excellent thriller by [a] rising star. Safe House ... is set on an Isle of Man as you never imagined it and has one of the best new heroines for a long time ... Popular fiction at its best.' (The Spectator)

'Ewan keeps the twists coming ... Rob and Rebecca are engaging company during this ride-by-the-seat-of-your-pants novel.' (The Independent on Sunday) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Best known for his 'Good Thief's Guide To...' series of comedy/crime novels, Chris Ewan turns his hand to the more serious end of crime fiction with his newest novel, 'Safe House'.

Rob Hale is a plumber on the Isle of Man, called out to repair a boiler in a remote cottage by two mysterious looking men, and a more talkative young woman named Lena. The next day, he takes Lena on a motorcycle ride, which ends in a crash. Waking up in hospital, Rob asks about the woman travelling with him, only to be told she doesn't exist. Rob is discharged from hospital, intent on finding out who the woman was, and how she disappeared. He is aided by Rebecca, a private investigator hired by Rob's parents to look into the suicide of his sister, just weeks previous. However, as they follow the clues and begin to uncover the mystery, Rob starts to wonder who Rebecca is really, and how she knew his sister.

As a huge fan of his earlier work, this change in direction and genre from Chris Ewan immediately piqued my interest. Would a writer more well known for his humorous comedy crime capers, be able to tackle a serious thriller?

Of course he would!

What Ewan accomplishes with his first foray into the world of thriller writing, is nothing short of remarkable. Safe House begins with a great hook...what would you do if you woke up in hospital after an accident, and everyone around you denied the existence of the person you were travelling with?

From there, Safe House travels at high speed throughout. It's a breathless, exciting read, which had me turning the page well into the late nights. That initial hook takes you on a journey into action thriller territory, which is up there with the best writing in the genre.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fast paced thoroughly engrossing thriller with lots of twists and turns. Compulsive reading could not put this down but did not want it to end. First book by this author I have read and will definitely be looking for more by him.
Anyone who enjoys a good entertaining thriller should this book, more please and soon.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I only purchased this book, because it was in the 20p section and didn't really know what to expect. It has only taken me 3 sittings to read it. As although in places it seems really far fetched, it all becomes clear at the end. Easy to read!! Anyone who is interested in crime or detective novels this is a book for you. I would have gladly paid more--
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have just finished this book, and I have been reading some of the other reviews, of which there are plenty!

I am not going to write a synopsis, there are plenty of those in other reviews.

The book really seems to polarise opinions, but my view is that whilst the 5 star reviews are probably too generous, the 1 star ones are even more unfair (I find it quite amusing that some of the 1 star reviews criticise the spelling and grammar, but are full of grammatical and spelling mistakes themselves)

I actually really enjoyed the plot, yes it is quite involved, and sometimes it was a bit tricky remembering which character is which, but there were some nice twists and turns which kept me guessing about a number of things right to the end, it is definitely worth sticking with. The descriptions of the Manx geography, and the tie-in to the TT races were also very welcome.

I do agree to a degree with the reviews which criticise the characterisations, apart from the lead (Rob) I did think that they were a bit underdeveloped, which made it rather difficult to really feel any sympathy for them.

Some of the violence is a bit graphic, but there isn't a lot of it, and where it does occur it is not gratuitous, but rather included to give an insight in to the characters.

It wouldn't take a lot for this book to reach 4 or even 5 stars: making some of the characters more real; cutting out a few of the longer, more convoluted sentences; and removing a few 'Americanisms' (A Manxman calling a wallet a 'billfold' for example).
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
"Safe House" - 2 flash comments on the front cover refer to this book as ' . . . . a dark, absorbing thriller...' and ' ... an exciting well crafted thriller...' These comments could not be more apt. It is a brilliant book, it really is. The sort of story that would translate well to the small screen in similar vein to "Broadchurch".

I hate books that take me a long while to get into. I like to be drawn in at the first chapter and this story does just that.

The story is set on the Isle of Man, the home of the TT Races. Rob Hale (1 of the main characters) is in hospital. He has had a motor bike accident and lost consciousness. Rob has been out for hours and now wakes for the second time, to see a young lady doctor studying his chart. As well as concussion, Rob had sustained a fracture to his left shoulder, bruised ribs, minor abrasions to his left side and bruising on his leg. Although barely awake, Rob wanted to know how Lena was, his friend that had been taken in the 1st ambulance according to the facial haired paramedic. He told Rob that she had been hurt worse and had to be taken first.

No one seems to know about Lena!

Dr Stanley comes to see Rob and warns him about the side effects of his accident and loss of consciousness - headache, dizziness, nausea and confused thinking! Rob again asks about Lena telling Dr Stanley that she had been taken in the 1st ambulance. There was only one ambulance and only one person found at the scene of the accident - Rob Hale, Dr Stanley confirms.

The story goes on with police interviews, Rob's parents visiting him and the journey he undertakes to find out what happened. Along the way we meet Rebecca Lewis a Private Investigator from London.
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