Greenwich Park by Katherine Faulkner is published with Raven Books (Bloomsbury Imprint) and is described as ‘masterfully plotted and utterly addictive…a dark, compelling look at motherhood, friendships, privilege and the secrets we keep to protect ourselves’. When I mentioned on Twitter that I was about to start Greenwich Park, the reaction from fellow readers/bloggers was unanimous – I was going to get nothing else done! And they were correct. I just love a thriller that grabs me unreservedly like a dog with a bone and does not let go. Greenwich Park was one such book.
Helen, Daniel, Serena and Rory have been hanging out together for years. Helen and Rory are siblings. Daniel and Serena are their respective partners. All attended college together and they became a natural, and expected, foursome. When Helen and Rory’s parents were tragically killed in a car accident, Helen, with Daniel her husband, remained in the family home and Rory took over his father’s well-established and successful architectural firm. Daniel went into partnership with Rory as it was generally agreed that he had the appropriate skills and was more astute business-wise than Rory. Serena was self-employed as a photographer with her own studio locally situated. Helen, due to complications with previous pregnancies, was on doctor-prescribed early maternity leave. They all live nearby in Greenwich Park. There is a side friendship in the story and that is between Helen and her old childhood friend Katie, now a journalist. Katie is also on-off dating Helen’s other brother Charlie, who is generally considered a somewhat less driven individual.
Helen is a bit frustrated at home. With Serena also pregnant, she suggests they all attend an ante-natal class together. On the first night she is very disappointed to arrive at the venue with none of the others there. Daniel had to work late and Serena had a last-minute change of heart. Helen is annoyed but remains at the class and meets Rachel. Rachel is also on her own. A bit hot-headed and erratic in her behaviour, Helen is initially sceptical of Rachel but, after a while, she warms a little to her. Helen is feeling very much abandoned by all her busy friends and this new injection of life into her otherwise boring world might be just the distraction she needs. Daniel is working long hours and Helen is lonely.
Helen thought she had life sorted. A perfectionist in many ways she dreamed of the perfect life with Daniel and her new baby, surrounded by friends and her remaining family. At times quite needy, she had aspirations to be hip, cool, that friend that draws people in, like Serena. But Helen was never that person and Rachel’s attention, although at times a little suffocating, appeals to Helen. Why not embrace this friendship? Why not try something a little different?
What transpires is a twisty, sinister and very compelling story with an array of wonderfully depicted characters. Katherine Faulkner has written a book that is both riveting and tense, a proper page-turner that really is an addictive read. A cracking debut by any standards, Greenwich Park is packed with deviousness and lies. There are so many layers to this plot that just keep peeling away throwing you into disarray as you attempt to unravel who is behind the trail of destruction that ensues. This is a volatile tale, one that takes the reader on an exciting journey, a psychological thriller that will set you on the edge of your seat. I don’t normally comment on an ending of a book but Katherine Faulkner BRAVO!
(c) Swirl and Thread
Order your copy online here.