The Stranger Inside by Laura Benedict Book Review

Ugh, this heroine! She must be read to be believed, lol.



The Stranger Inside by Laura Benedict

Released February 2018

Thriller |  Goodreads | Amazon 

Source: Library Borrow
A chilling, suspenseful psychological drama in the tradition of Shari Lapena and Liane Moriarty, by the Edgar and ITW Thriller Award nominated author Laura Benedict. What if you came home to find a stranger living in your house? Kimber Hannon imagines she has complete control over her life, until she comes home to find that her house key no longer opens her front door. A man is living in her house. A stranger, who presents a lease bearing Kimber's own signature. When she confronts him, he gets close enough to whisper, I was there. I saw what you did. Those words reveal a connection to Kimber's distant past, before her sister's sudden death more than twenty years ago. Her fear abruptly shifts. This trespasser knows her somehow. He isn't after anything as simple as her money or artwork or charming Craftsman bungalow. He wants to come into her carefully orchestrated life--and destroy it. Kimber has always been ruthless when it comes to getting what she wants. But can she discover the truth about her enemy's identity before he makes good on his threat to shine a spotlight into the darkest parts of her past?

These Are My Thoughts

The Stranger Inside has a weird and highly unlikely premise but I am not an attorney or a police officer so who am I to say, maybe this shit really happens? Here’s the scene: Kimber comes home from a retreat and discovers she cannot get into her own damn home. Someone has changed the locks and the squatter claims he has a lease that Kimber signed and basically makes her appear like she’s lost all of her marbles, then he whispers something sinister in her ear. The police won’t help her and her elderly neighbor friend claims that she saw her let the guy in so she is pretty much screwed. She leaves and goes to stay with her only other friend and calls up her ex (an attorney she dumped) to help her out of this oddly unrealistic bind. Gabriel AKA the Ex Who Still Loves Her For Some Bizarre Reason eagerly agrees even though their break-up was rough on him. A murder may or may not happen.

Kimber plots and does her own investigating and attempts to get back into her home all the while learning more about the man inside her house. The man who is probably wearing her underwear at this point (ahhh). Her digging leads to the eventual discovery of many secrets but it takes a while to get there. First there are reveals about Kimber’s guilty past, told in flashbacks in a separate timeline, her shady relationships (shady on her end because she is an AWFUL and terrible person) and a bunch of other things that I’m not going to reveal.

I basically threw my brain out the window and went with the flow after that wild setup. I’d advise you to do the same here. The twists and turns defy all logic and the emotional entanglements are a tad over the top but it’s never, ever a boring read. I have to give it that.

Most of my notes about this story are about Kimber and are not something I’d like to expose the rest of you to. Kimber is one of the most unlikable main characters I have read in a good long while. You can’t get on her side because she is such an AWFUL person in both timelines. The more I learned about her, the less I liked about her. Her only redeeming quality to me was her kindness to a sad little dog, everything else about her was selfish and just full of ugh. But I can’t lie, I found her horribleness fascinating. What made her this way? I had to know and I had to keep reading!

In the end I was left feeling a wee bit disappointed with some of the revelations but the telling of the story was compelling and it grabbed me even if I wanted Kimber to sit on a porcupine for the rest of her life when I turned the last page.

3 out of 5


Comments

  1. I always wonder what makes a horrible person be so horrible. This sounds like it had a lot of craziness and twists that made it interesting.

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    Replies
    1. It was a bit crazy. Even though I despised the main character, the book was infectious.

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  2. This story sounds a bit twisted. I can see why you wanted to keep reading though, despite the fact that the main character was such a horrible person.

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    Replies
    1. Yep, I could not stop. Even though I probably should've!

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  3. I may have to read this just so I can find out why Kimber is so horrible 😁

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    Replies
    1. Haha, you won't be able to stop once you start though . . .

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  4. Sit on a porcupine? LOL You made me curious now!

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  5. Ugh I hate an MC that I just can't bring myself to like!

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    Replies
    1. I can sometimes get into them but this one was just too much, even for me!

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