Published by Berkley on July 24th 2018
This riveting psychological suspense debut by Alex Dahl asks the question, "how far would you go to hold on to what you have?"
Cecilia Wilborg has it all--a loving husband, two beautiful daughters, and a gorgeous home in an affluent Norwegian suburb. And she works hard to keep it all together. Too hard...
There is no room for mistakes in her life. Even taking home a little boy whose parents forgot to pick him up at the pool can put a crimp in Cecilia's carefully planned schedule. Especially when she arrives at the address she was givenand finds an empty, abandoned house...
There's nothing for Cecilia to do but to take the boy home with her, never realizing that soon his quiet presence and knowing eyes will trigger unwelcome memories from her past--and unravel her meticulously crafted life...
Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Boy at the Door. If your summer reading list is lacking something suspenseful and disturbing, (c’mon they can’t all be light and fluffy) I highly recommend adding this book to your TBR.
If Bravo were casting for The Real Housewives of Sandefjord, they would most definitely want to contract with Cecelia Wilborg. Socialite, designer, day-drinking pill-popper… Cecelia wears a lot of hats. She’s driven to achieve perfection in all aspects of her life and that’s a lot of pressure. She’s understandably annoyed when charged with the task of bringing home a young boy left behind at the club pool. Seriously, she’s a busy woman and those Missoni blankets are not going to buy themselves.
Things go from bad to worse quickly when she discovers an abandoned house at the address she’s been given. Faced with making a difficult decision in terms of how to handle the situation Cecelia, well, let’s just say she doesn’t do exactly as I would have done. And so begins an epic tale of lies, secrets, and more lies to cover up the secrets.
The strength of this book, which is both plot and character driven, lies overwhelmingly in the awesomely rendered character that is Cecelia. She is an absolutely convincing dichotomy of a woman. She is both a “love to hate” and “I can can truly empathize with that” sort of woman. Careful attention was paid to the development of each character. Fear of preventing you from going in with an open mind prevents me from making specific comments on the other characters.
The Boy at the Door provides the trifecta of suspense; it’s a page-turner with an unreliable narrator and an original plot. Solid by any standards, it’s especially impressive as a debut. Though I’ve struggled with Nordic noir in the past, I’ve found this to be a fresh offering; a leaning toward domestic suspense that still offers some traditional crime and procedural elements. I will definitely look forward to Alex Dahl’s next novel.
Don’t forget to check out the giveaway on my Instagram account beginning at 11am EST.
In closing, I will leave you with what I now think of as “Johan’s theme”:
Many thanks to Berkley for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Jennifer Tar Heel Reader says
Wonderful review, Ann Marie! So true about Cecilia and the Real Housewives! I’m happy you enjoyed this original and captivating book, too.
Ann Marie says
Brenda Pruitt says
This sounds right up my alley!
Ann Marie says
I think you’d like it.
Cleo @Cleopatra Loves Books says
I read your rave review and was delighted to see that this is a debut novel as that means the promise of more great books in the future.
Ok Ann Marie, you’re really increasing my already bursting tbr…I added Our House after your enthusiastic review and now I’m dying to get ahold of this one after this awesome review! I haven’t heard of this book but it sounds great, your summer reading seems to be going well:)
Wonderful review! Hadn’t heard about this one before but your review has definitely convinced me to add it to my TBR. I am curious about Cecilia already.
Ann Marie says
Awesome! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!
Stephanie's Book Reviews says
This really hasn’t been on my radar, but it looks really good. I’m going to add it to my TBR. Great review!
Great review! I do love me some Real Housewives, so I will have to check it out!
Jackie B. says
Oh man, I haven’t thought about this song in soooo long. The Vamp’s remake is super interesting. Oh, how the world of music has changed!
Anyway. Another well-loved psychological thriller! Hahaha. I feel like such a baby after your introduction. O_O Oops. Great review, as always. I hope your giveaway goes well!
Ann Marie says
Thanks, Jackie! 🙂