Monday 20 May 2024

Her Name Was Rose by Claire Allan #HerNameWasRose @ClaireAllan @AvonBooksUK #BookReview


Her name was Rose. You watched her die. And her death has created a vacancy.

When Emily lets a stranger step out in front of her, she never imagines that split second will change her life. But after Emily watches a car plough into the young mother – killing her instantly – she finds herself unable to move on.

And then she makes a decision she can never take back.

Because Rose had everything Emily had ever dreamed of. A beautiful, loving family, a great job and a stunning home. And now Rose’s husband misses his wife, and their son needs a mother. Why couldn’t Emily fill that space?

But as Emily is about to discover, no one’s life is perfect … and not everything is as it seems.

Her Name Was Rose by Claire Allan was published in paperback in June 2018 by Avon Books. 

I read this when I was on holiday in Maderia in March and totally forgot to write my review until now! 

Her Name Was Rose is Claire Allan's first psychological thriller, before this, she was well know for writing what is generally considered to be 'women's contemporary fiction'. She's written a lot more psychological thrillers since this one and I really need to catch up! 

Lead character Emily is a troubled, deeply complex character. She's managed to get through a traumatic relationship with her ex boyfriend, but the emotional scars left from her experiences have isolated her. She's vulnerable and a little paranoid. 

When she allows a stranger to go in front of her when exiting a lift onto a main road, she is horrified to witness the death of that women. Mown down by a car, Rose's life is extinguished in an instant, leaving her small son without a mother, and her dedicated husband without a wife. 

Emily is convinced that it was a case of mistaken identity and that she was the intended victim. She cannot get Rose out of her head and becomes obsessed with stories of this wonderful, kind, caring woman who had a life that she could only dream of, with a handsome husband who adored her and work mates who are devastated by her death.  Emily's obsession with Social Media and stories about Rose lead her to make the drastic decision to be just like Rose. She applies for Rose's job as a dental receptionist and gets the job. It is not long before she becomes a shoulder for Rose's husband Cian, listening to him, slowly working her way into his life. 

But, as with most things on Social Media,  Emily begins to realise that things were not quite so wonderful as people were led to believe. We've all done it, drooled over someone else's food photos, or their holiday snaps and their beautiful clothes, we've all probably painted a nicer picture of our own lives at times too. 

With hurtling twists and turns along the way, the reader follows Emily's journey as she learns more and more about the real Rose and her real life. At times I wanted to scream at Emily, to make her stop and think.  However, it is Emily's own insecurities that make her continue and there's not much that will stop her. 

This is a detailed and excellent study in human nature, and how things are often air brushed so much that we just don't know what to believe. There are some pretty despicable main characters who are drawn so very well and the plot is both intriguing and entertaining. 

I will certainly be picking up more from this author, and soon. Recommended. 

Claire Allan is a bestselling author of pyschological thrillers and, in the past, women's fiction. 

A former reporter with the Derry Journal, she published eight contemporary women's fiction novels with Poolbeg Press in Ireland before becoming a full time author, and switching genre to 'unleash her darker side'

Her first domestic noir novel, Her Name Was Rose was published by Avon/ HarperCollins in 2018 and was an instant bestseller in several countries. Claire's novels have been translated into multiple languages.

Latterly. Claire worked as a story consultant on series one of the huge successful BBC drama series 'Blue Lights' with Two Cities Productions. She has also written a number of rom-coms under the pen-name Freya Kennedy, and supported Sunday Times Bestseller Serena Terry while she was writing her Mammy Banter titles.

In 2023 Claire signed a multi-book deal with Boldwood Books to write four thrillers as Claire Allan, and three rom-coms as Freya Kennedy, securing her publishing into 2026.

Her first thriller with Boldwood - THE AFFAIR - publishes in May 2024.

Claire still lives in Derry with her family.

X @ClaireAllan

IG @claireallen_author

No comments:

Post a Comment