I recently reviewed Here To Stay by Mark Edwards which got me right back into the psychological thriller genre. Through The Wall by Caroline Corcoran had a similar vibe about it from the synopsis and cover, and I expected it would be the same high level of writing and tension. I was right – if you like premises that are a little bit creepy then this is one you’ll love.
Author: Caroline Corcoran
Genre: Psychological thriller
Published: September 2019
Lexie loves her home. She feels safe and secure in it – and loved, thanks to her boyfriend Tom.
But recently, something’s not been quite right. A book out of place. A wardrobe door left open. A set of keys going missing…
Tom thinks Lexie’s going mad – but then, he’s away more often than he’s at home nowadays, so he wouldn’t understand.
Because Lexie isn’t losing it. She knows there’s someone out there watching her. And, deep down, she knows there’s nothing she can do to make them stop…
(Taken from Goodreads)
Through The Wall is written from two perspectives – Lexie, the woman with the seemingly perfect life (although of course, this is far from the truth), and Harriet, Lexie’s unknown neighbour who is getting over a distressing break-up and has a past history of mental health issues, which we learn from the opening scene in a psychiatric unit. I personally love books written from multiple perspectives and Corcoran weaves the two very well – sometimes they alternate with days in between, and other times just seconds.
Reading the story through the eyes of both a psychosis sufferer and someone struggling with fertility issues is powerful, and both of them are written very well. There’s always a worry that mental health may be trivialised or glorified in some way, yet here this is not the case (coming from someone who works in mental health). Harriet’s issues, although extreme, are perfectly viable and clearly a lot of research has been undertaken. Lexie is equally well-portrayed – despite my nonchalance towards babies and my complete lack of desire to have children of my own, I couldn’t help but feel so much pain for her as each attempt to conceive fails. The acknowledgements of the book reveal that the author has gone through fertility issues herself, so once again there is nothing but realism and accuracy here.
Even with standout main characters a book can’t be truly successful without its minor characters, and this is another thing Corcoran does well. As Lexie distances herself from the outside world we see less and less of her family and friends, but when they are included they feel believable and real. Tom, her fiancé, is the most prevalent of the minor characters and pivotal in the plot, and Corcoran cleverly uses first person to show multiple facets of him, leading the reader to feel a whole mixture of emotions. The only characters I wanted to see more of were Lexie’s parents (and, actually, Tom’s family as well) – although they had their place I felt there should have been slightly more inclusion of them given the way that the emotional side of the story goes.
The interesting thing about Through The Wall is that, whilst it’s an enjoyable and gripping read, the uneasiness it creates is so much so that I found myself not wanting to finish it because I was so worried that a specific, tragic event was going to take place. On the final day of reading I put the book down for the night around 80% in, however I could feel my mind wandering back to the plot that evening, building all sorts of anxious feelings within me. In the end I had to finish it to put my mind at rest, as it had truly consumed my thoughts (which must be a good thing).
Through The Wall by Caroline Corcoran is an absorbing and fascinating read, and the author’s ability to create tension and unease absolutely shines throughout the book. It’s certainly not a story of sunshine and rainbows so I wouldn’t suggest it if fertility issues or mental health are triggers for you, however I highly recommend to fans of the genre as it’s well-crafted and creates a strong emotional experience.
If you’d like to purchase a copy of Through The Wall by Caroline Corcoran then you can do so using the following links:
Caroline Corcoran is an author whose first novel, Through The Wall, is out in October 2019. Her second book will follow in 2020.
As well as writing books, Caroline is a freelance lifestyle and popular culture journalist who has written and edited for most of the top magazines, newspapers and websites in the UK.
(Taken from Amazon)
Are you a fan of psychological thrillers? Let me know in the comments below, and don’t forget to like and comment! You can read some of my other contemporary fiction reviews here: