17 Church Row
Author: James Carol
Publish Date: November 28th 2019
Publisher: Zaffre Books
For fans of J. P. Delaney’s The Girl Before comes a thriller that makes us question our relationship with technology and the lengths we would go to, to keep our family safe.
Three years ago, Ethan and Nikki Rhodes suffered a devastating loss. Their four-year-old daughter Grace was tragically killed when she ran from their garden into the path of a car. Ethan, a radio personality, escapes into work, while Nikki quits her job to care for their remaining child, Grace’s twin sister, Bella, who hasn’t spoken since that night.
Trying to give the family a fresh start, Ethan moves them to a revolutionary house designed by the world-famous architect, Catriona Fisher. For the Rhodes’, this is a life-changing move because a key feature of the house is the state of the art security system that allows them to be completely safe from the outside world within their own home.
But what if what they fear most is actually inside the house? What if 17 Church Row isn’t the safe haven that they think it is?
Many Thanks to Tracy @ Compulsive Readers and the publisher for my spot on the blog tour and a copy of the book. My review is honest and unbiased.
Wow…this novel blew my tiny mind. The thriller genre is my favourite and sometimes they can get a little bit samey, but this renewed my love for the genre tenfold! The topic was scarily relevant to the times we now find ourselves living in and makes you think about just how easy it is to put things out there on the internet. It made me think and ponder just how much myself and my peers live our lives on the stage that is the internet. James Carol’s writing style was invigorating, and his narrative was just thrilling. I was hook, line and sinker from the first gripping page to very last. I was addicted, and the storyline portrayed the internet as a silent, insidious being. Always watching, note taking, a photographic memory. It never forgets.
I knew this book was going to deliver for me but at the same time it completely caught me off guard. I love a premise that is new and exciting. You knew it was going to be a ride, but the suspense narrative was proper edge of your seat stuff. The story had my attention, it never wavered for a moment. The suspense game was so strong, I held the book so tightly it’s a wonder it wasn’t damaged. Just how much information do we put online? Online banking, date of births, how many children we have, our mother’s maiden name, the first street/school we went to. The list goes on. The premise is simple and harrowing. How far would a parent be willing to go to protect their child? My advice to you is to get everything you need to be cosy – blanket, cuppa tea, biscuits. This book will chill you, bone deep. James Carol nailed this…it just WORKED. The narrative firmly placed me in the parent’s shoes, and it was haunting. I would do anything to protect my children but it’s all well and good until the device you rely on turns into the danger. Turns into everything you fear. The horror near stopped my heart.
17 church rows is a new start for Ethan and Nikki and their daughter, Bella. Nikki really broke my heart. Her ongoing struggle and grief would even melt an ice queens’ heart. I just wanted to reach into the book and give her a great big hug. Bellas twin sister, Grace died after being struck by a car. Her grief is strong and unyielding, she needs this new start. Bella has her own grief and it is manifesting in being mute. She won’t talk about the accident. She won’t talk at all. So, that leads us to the house. Its revolutionary. The security system is complex and unbreakable. Its teamed up with an A.I called Alice. She’s friendly…
This story was like sinking into the darkness, the pain and rawness made it hard to swim through it. The story held me captive until the very end. It was terrifying but as a thriller it satisfied my bookworm desires. It was a taut plotline that could snap at any time. It’s a compelling read that tells us all we need to know about human nature – their flaws, fears and a realness that strikes a chord.
James Carol was born in Scotland, where he spent his early years. He moved to England in the eighties and has lived there ever since. At various times he has worked as a guitarist, sound engineer, guitar tutor, journalist, and a horse riding instructor.
Broken Dolls, the first Jefferson Winter thriller, was published in 2014 and has sold a third of a million copies and been translated into twelve languages. This was followed by three other Jefferson Winter thrillers and a trilogy of novellas set during Winter’s FBI days.
James has also written three standalone thrillers. The first of these, The Killing Game was shortlisted for a CWA Ian Fleming Dagger award.
When he’s not writing, James can usually be found in his recording studio where he is currently writing and recording the first Dream Nation album.
James lives in Hertfordshire with his wife, two children, a dog and a horse.