Sometimes a book comes along that totally blows the mind. Nearest Thing To Crazy by Elizabeth Forbes has done just that, my head is spinning, my heart has been beating so fast that I thought it was going to burst out of my chest. I've been so angry with the characters that I've actually shouted at them - out loud.
Published by Cutting Edge Press on 27 June 2013, there is no doubt that this is going to be one of my Top Ten Books of the year. There were times when I was actually a little bit scared of turning over the page, this is a mind-bending psychological head-fuck of the highest order. I loved it!
Set in a small Worcestershire village - a group of middle-class families are happy to welcome novelist Ellie into their tight-knit group. Glamorous Ellie fits nicely into their glossy lives, with their fancy houses, smart cars and perfect gardens. She tells them that she is here to write her next book, she's rented a cottage for a few months and is looking forward to getting some inspiration for her story.
Cass and Dan have been married for years, their only child Laura has gone off to university and Cass is happy to potter around the garden, growing vegetables, collecting eggs and making chutney. Everyone seems to love Ellie - except Cass, she is the only one who feels uncomfortable around her. And for very good reason. Slowly and gradually, Cass sees her life unravel - her past insecurities come back to haunt her, but nobody else can see that this is all because of Ellie. First her husband, then her friends and finally her daughter - all of them - beginning to doubt her, believing in Ellie, slowly driving her mad.
Elizabeth Forbes is an excellent author who has written a story that has twists and turns on every page, not once did I guess how this was going to end. The suspense builds until at times, it is almost unbearable. Cleverly weaved into the main story of Cass is Ellie's point of view - who do you believe?
Gripping, clever, tense and thrilling. This really is a fantastic read that I could hardly bear to put down and the story is going to haunt me for quite a while.
With thanks to Saffeya from Cutting Edge Press for sending my copy for review.
Cutting Edge Press have a really interesting catalogue of books, check out their website, their Facebook page and follow them on Twitter. Elizabeth Forbes is also on Twitter.