‘Sometimes your first love won’t let you go…’
Today I join CL Taylor on tour with her latest novel The Fear.
Described as ‘a gripping psychological thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat‘, The Fear has just been published with Avon Books.
CL Taylor has written quite a number of books, but for me, this is my first by the author. I have my review here for you all so please do continue reading…
When Lou Wandsworth ran away to France with her teacher Mike Hughes, she thought he was the love of her life. But Mike wasn’t what he seemed and he left her life in pieces.
Now 32, Lou discovers that he is involved with teenager Chloe Meadows. Determined to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself, she returns home to confront him for the damage he’s caused.
But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as Lou tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that she could once again become his prey…
‘Mike is the love of my life and I am his’
These are the chilling words from fourteen year old Louise (Lou) Wandsworth. Mike is old enough to be her father and is her teacher.
Now in her thirties, Lou returns to her childhood town to sort her father’s affairs, after his recent passing. She has not been back since her teenage years, when events took place that changed her life forever.
Louise, was involved with the local martial arts club. She made friends with her instructor Mike Hughes. Although an adult, Lou was thrilled to see that Mike was genuinely interested in her. But Mike was not all he seemed. After he proclaimed his undying love to her, Mike took Lou to France, her innocence and naivety painful to witness.
‘I can’t believe I get to spend a whole weekend with Mike in France. First stop, a hotel room just outside Calais. I’ve been in hotel rooms before, mostly on holiday with Mum and Dad…He looks at me but it’s as though he doesn’t really see me. His cheeks are flushed and his eyes have this weird glassy sheen to them.’
*NOTE ~ There are additional scenes and descriptions in this book which may cause upset to some people, so please do be aware of the content of this novel. While it is a thriller, it does contain some disturbing elements.*
Lou, now that she’s back home, decides it is time to confront her demons. She has lived with the memories for too long. The hurt and pain has affected every single relationship since and Lou wants to finally deal with her past by meeting up with Mike. But what she discovers frightens her to the core. Mike has not changed his ways. After a term in prison, Lou was hoping he could redeem himself in some manner but unfortunately, Mike is and always will be a predator, a groomer of young teenage girls. Lou witnesses Mike in the company of a young girl, Chloe Meadows and it sets off an explosion in her brain. this CANNOT happen again.
Lou tries to approach the situation in a sensible manner but soon realises no-one is really listening, so she decides to take the matter into her own hands.
You can feel how frantic Lou is as you turn the pages and you see how events unfold. There are numerous characters involved in this story, all damaged in some way, all affected by the heinous and disgusting actions of this one individual. Lou has spent years trying to move on with her life, but the images of what this man did to her are like a poison in her head and she decides enough…..
I did find I had to suspend belief for a few scenes, where I felt that Lou’s behaviour was crazed and slightly irrational for a woman of her age. But…I was happy to do this, as the core of the story deals with such a sensitive and disturbing matter.
It’s always difficult to review a book that deals with such distressing topics, but I think the author has provided a good mix with the psychological thriller aspect and the handling of such a deplorable issue.
The Fear is a book about overcoming your fears and facing up to the destructive forces behind it. The depiction of the grooming and subsequent abuse made for extremely difficult and uncomfortable reading, which is a credit to the author’s writing, to be able to stir up such emotions in the reader. This will not be a book for everyone due to the content, but overall it is a fast-paced, shocking read that has you flying through the pages.
Purchase Link ~ The Fear
About the author:
C.L. Taylor lives in Bristol with her partner and son.
She started writing fiction in 2005 and her short stories have won several awards and have been published by a variety of literary and women’s magazines.
In 2014, The Bookseller named C.L. Taylor as one of the year’s Bestselling Adult Fiction Debut Authors for The Accident. The Lie and The Missing were Sunday Times top 10 bestsellers in paperback, and both books hit the #1 spot on the Kindle bestseller list. She has sold 1 million books to date.
Website ~ https://cltaylorauthor.com/
Twitter ~ @callytaylor