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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.2 out of 5
5 Stars
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  • Gothic atmosphere, solid mystery

    Just a Few Words: As a long-time fan of Elly Griffith’s, I was beyond excited to read this book, and I was not disappointed. The author brought her A-Game to this one! Okay, let’s begin…. The Stranger Diaries by Elly Griffiths is a mystery novel. First, let me thank NetGalley, the publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and of course the author, for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. My Synopsis: Clare Cassidy is a high-school English teacher at Talgarth High. She is also writing a book on R.M. Holland, who coincidentally, once lived in the old part of the school. He is a bit of an enigma, an author whose wife Alice is said to haunt the staircase where she died, and whose daughter Mariana seems to have disappeared. He wrote a fairly well-known short story entitled “The Stranger”. Clare has learned a lot from his diary. She has kept her own diaries off and on for many years, and writes almost daily. Georgia, Clare’s 15 year-old daughter, also keeps a diary (unknown to her mom), on-line, as do her friends. Also unknown to her mom is the fact that she too is fascinated by R.M. Holland, she too is writing a book, and she is friends with Bryony Hughes, a white witch. Clare does, however, know that Georgia has a 21-year old boyfriend named Ty, and that’s about all she can handle right now. Ella Elphick, Clare’s close friend, also teaches English at Talgarth. That is, of course, until she was stabbed to death, with a quote from Holland’s “The Stranger" by her side. DS Harbinder Kaur and DS Neil Winston are from the Murder Squad, and will be investigating Ella’s death. But as more bodies pile up, it becomes evident that they all tie back to Clare, her diaries, and “The Stranger“. My Opinions: I am thoroughly enjoying the Ruth Galloway series by this author, but this stand-alone novel took me a little while to get into….but once I did, I couldn’t let it go. I liked how the tale was told from three different viewpoints – Clare’s, Georgia’s, and Harbinger’s. They were three very distinct and different voices, which I think the author nailed! Then, a fourth voice was added – the actual short story “The Stranger", which was interspersed throughout the book – a story within a story. As always, Elly Griffiths provided a wonderful plot, with enough interesting characters and twists that I kept changing my mind as to the identity of the killer. Loved that! Overall, a success! I highly recommend this book!

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    5 person found this review helpful

    5 people found this review helpful

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Great read!

    Great read with many interesting turns that keep you guessing until the very end. A different twist for Elly Griffiths novels in that the story is told from 3 different perspectives which takes you deeper into the perspectives of the characters. Looking forward to her next novel ... keep them coming!

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    1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Did not disappoint

    I love Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series. I love Gothic mysteries. So this was a no-brainer for me, I knew I wanted to read it as soon as I read the description. I wasn't disappointed. The creepy Gothic atmosphere was there. The mystery was there, and I didn't figure it out before it was revealed. Interesting characters, red herrings, creepy goings-on - it all kept me interested and guessing and I very much enjoyed it. My thanks to Netgalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for providing a copy for an unbiased review.

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    0 person found this review helpful

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  • Good Read Once I Got Into It

    Although I enjoyed the story, I found it difficult to get into initially. I love the Ruth Galloway series, and was hoping this would be as enjoyable. The ending was a bit of a surprise, overall a good read, but not as entertaining as the previous Elly Griffiths I have read.

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    0 person found this review helpful

    0 people found this review helpful

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

  • Modern day Gothic tale

    An absolute tour de force of a book; an enthralling, spooky, atmospheric modern day gothic mystery that uses multiple narrators to tell a present and past murderous tale. I loved this book and the character development, especially of Clare and her daughter Georgia. The juxtaposition of the narration of the story "The Stranger" with the alternating narrators voices Clare, Georgia and Harbinder was brilliant. This book grabbed me from the first page and I was reluctant to put it down. A highly recommended read for anyone who likes a mystery with a touch of a ghost story.

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    0 person found this review helpful

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