“The act of keeping the secret a secret has almost become bigger than the secret itself.”// Review of “Disclaimer” by Renee Knight

Title: Disclaimer
Author: Renee Knight
Audio book narrator: Michael Pennington, Laura Paton
Genre: Thriller
Date Read: 19/05/2016 – 23/05/2016
Rating: ★★★


This is a really interesting book which I devoured quite quickly, even on audio (often I only listen to an hour or two a day but I finished all eight-and-a-half hours of this in three days); however, some predictability and suspension of disbelief issues resulted in a lower rating.

Catherine Ravenscroft is shocked when she discovers that the novel she is reading reveals intimate details of the darkest day of her life. As her life starts to fall apart as a result, she tries to track down the author, only to find his plans are becoming even more sinister.

The thing about a book like this is that it is structured in such a way to gradually reveal more information to the reader. Which is fine, but that means that the characters say and do things to prolong the tension that start to feel unrealistic after a while. It took me a while to figure out the exact nature of Catherine’s secret, once I did, I wondered why she hadn’t just, well, told someone. Yes, it was a huge thing and I could understand why she had kept to herself up until that point, but with everything falling apart, simply being honest with her husband could have saved a whole lot of bother. But of course, that would have meant half the book wouldn’t have happened.

I also raised my eyebrows at a few of the assumptions the book made. For a start, the author of the novel that scares Catherine so much self-publishes it and leaves a copy in her mailbox. The author (I’m trying to be as spoiler-free as possible, so hence my lack of pronouns) is obsessed with finding out whether or not she has read it, but what if she had been reading something else at the time? Or knew she hadn’t ordered it, so she donated it to gave it to someone else? Not to mention that the actual events described differ greatly from ends up in the novel, so apart from one scene right at the end, why does Catherine recognise herself at all?

I also found  myself easily predicting some of the author’s actions, which was a bit disappointing. Usually I’m useless at predicting things, especially in something that’s supposed to be a thriller.

Still, some of these questions are sort of addressed, and the character of the author, whose POV chapters alternate with Catherine’s, was one I both enjoyed and disliked at the same time, so I was willing to let things slide. Unfortunately, those questions, plus the fact that I found it hard to really embrace and connect with any of the main characters, meant that while I found the book enjoyable, I did not find it incredible.

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3 thoughts on ““The act of keeping the secret a secret has almost become bigger than the secret itself.”// Review of “Disclaimer” by Renee Knight

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