The Devil’s Work by Mark Edwards

The Devil's Work.jpgSophie Greenwood is relishing return to the world of work since the birth of her daughter, Daisy. She has her dream job, working in the publishing department of Jackdaw Books. An encounter on her first day with the owner of the company, however, brings up some deeply unsettling memories. Sophie had two serious friends at university, one of which had ties to Jackdaw Books – and that friendship ended unpleasantly and very finally. She thought all of that was behind her…

But there are more than memories lurking in the company. Rumours abound about a death in the building and soon bad things begin to happen. One of her co-workers seems determined to do anything to climb to the top, no matter who gets left in her wake. And when thing begin to get very personal towards Sophie – and her family – it seems that she is the next obstacle. But this may be more than just a case of overzealous ambition. Dark plans are brewing – and Sophie needs to find the truth before the truth finds her.

A bit of a change of pace from my recent Golden Age books, but I figured it was time to try a new author and Netgalley lured me to this title. I’ve been meaning to take a look at some psychological thrillers – I’ve a copy of The Girl On The Train and I Let You Go on the shelf – so I thought I’d start off with something that doesn’t have a stream of “Isn’t it the best thing ever?” reviews going ahead of it. Hence something new.

It’s an interesting read. The use of the ambitious colleague is one that I don’t recall seeing in the genre and the unsettling environment is well constructed, and the plot progressions regarding the work-place are well thought out and believably creepy. Cassie, Sophie’s work colleague/rival, is similarly believable – I’d say that it’s surprising that she gets as far as she does except that I, and probably you, have met at least one such person.

The present day story is inter-cut with flashbacks to Sophie’s university experience, which, obviously, leads to revelations about the present. Those revelations, though…

… OK, if you look at Goodreads or Amazon, it seems that virtually every other reader was floored by the final reveal. Maybe it’s just me having read too many detective novels, but I’d have been more surprised if the final twist had been anything else other than what it was. It does astonish me that, reading those reviews, virtually every other reader fell for what the reader was supposed to think, and with only one viable alternative…

I’m probably being a little unfair and I don’t want you to get the wrong impression here – there’s a fair few twists and turns as the story progresses and it was a good page-turner. But for me, it didn’t have the necessary core surprise to work perfectly.

Still, take a look at the online reviews, and judge for yourself. It’s Recommended, as it;s an atmospheric thriller that seems to have caught out the majority of readers out there. I’d love to know what you thought of it.

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4 comments

  1. I have a copy of this and I’m looking forward to it. You know, there are times when I think I read/watch too many crime books/films. When watching films, I guess long before the other people watching with me, That’s not bragging but I think if you read a lot of crime, you start picking up clues thrown out. Those sidelong glances…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This summer I’ve read several newer titles: Woman in Cabin 10, I see You, In Bitter Chill & Daisy in Chains. In each case the final solution was easily available with a little thought & concentration on the give-away clues (only the Daisy book had a small element which you couldn’t know). I still enjoyed reading all of these titles (apart from Woman in Cabin 10!), but was similarly astonished that the reviews seemed to think the endings of these books were such a mystery..!

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