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Tuesday 17 July 2018

‘The Boy At The Door’ by Alex Dahl

Published by House of Zeus Ltd,
12 July 2018.
ISBN: 978-1786-69923-7 (HB)

Cecilia is Norwegian, lives a charmed life with her handsome, dutiful husband Johan, and their two young gorgeous daughters in the picturesque town of Sandefjord. Chic clothes, a stylish home and champagne parties with women chums define her until her perfect yet vacuous existence implodes when Tobias, a scared, friendless eight year old comes to stay.

Narrated in the first person, this dark, tautly woven psychological thriller is full of page turning suspense. The reader is whisked seamlessly from one narrator’s perspective to another’s, the tales ultimately fitting together neatly. Secrets, lies and deceitfulness shadow every twist and turn.

Cecilia’s past rears its head threatening to tear her cherished family apart and she knows her demons will bring her fortress crashing down unless she takes drastic action so she must learn fast.    Sex, bad behaviour, drugs and murder collide on a path that takes the reader on a disturbing journey.  

The author’s knack of story telling keeps one reading as she convincingly controls the unfolding of the story. The dialogue is natural, characterisation skillful, and tension builds as Cecilia reviews her constantly shifting strategies, some foolish, some wily. Her relationship with Tobias deepens for he is a child who has witnessed and experienced   gruesome things to which no child should ever be exposed.  All this makes for a surefooted, engrossing debut of depth that culminates in an ending that is startling and dramatic as it is satisfying.
Reviewer: Serena Fairfax

Alex Dahl was born in Oslo, Norway, and is half American, half Norwegian, fully Francophile, and London resident. Alex is the author of The Boy at the Door, published world-wide in 2018. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University, as well as an MSc in Business Management. Alex loves to travel and has previously lived in Moscow, Paris, Stuttgart, Sandefjord, Switzerland and Bath.  To learn more about Alex Dahl, please visit her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

 Serena Fairfax spent her childhood in India, qualified as a lawyer in England and practised in London for many years. She began writing by contributing feature articles to legal periodicals   then turned her hand to fiction. Having published nine novels all, bar one, hardwired with a romantic theme, she has also written short stories and accounts of her explorations off the beaten track that feature on her blog. A tenth, distinctly unromantic, novel is a work in progress. Thrillers, crime and mystery narratives, collecting old masks and singing are a few of her favourite things.

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