Book Review: I See You by Claire Mackintosh
I See You by Claire Mackintosh
Published April 2017
An evil enterpriser makes it easy to stalk and kill women using the internet.
I see you.
Let’s add that to the list of phrases I never want to hear from a random stranger.
Zoe Walker has a busy life. She works full time, has two grown children living at home, a demanding boss, a boyfriend who gets butthurt easily, and a lovelorn ex-husband.
One day during her commute, she sees her face in a personal ad; one she had no knowledge of. Soon, Zoe finds out that other women whose faces had appeared in the same ad are being murdered.
No one believes her, though. They think she’s being silly and overly emotional. Another answer to the age-old question of, “Why didn’t she say something sooner?”
Zoe has a full life, and everyone is suspect. Every corner could reveal sinister surprises.
An interesting aspect of I See You is the book’s heavy focus on day-to-day life. These aren’t people who live entirely in the intrigue. They have jobs, and complicated relationships, and personal dramas, and honestly there’s just no time or space for this mess.
Come on, killer. Can’t you pick on someone with a large bank account and scads of free time?
Oftentimes, the suspense is all-consuming in thrillers like these. The characters live almost exclusively inside the drama as the lives they once knew melt away.
In this case, domestic life is all-consuming. Navigating her personal microcosm is a time and emotion-consuming job. Intrigue and suspense must take their places in an already long line of demands.
Some readers may be turned off by the lack of jump scares and dangerous moments. The suspense comes in small doses.
This book gets cozy with everyday life. We know each family member’s daily schedule, communication styles, and stressors. For me, though, it puts an interesting spin on the genre.
I See You is not necessarily a book about a killer on the loose. It’s more a book about a family living their lives and, oh look, there’s a killer on the sidelines, but gosh, can it wait? I have to make dinner first.