Book Review: Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Title: Unravelling Oliver
Author: Liz Nugent
Published: April 9th 2015 by Penguin
Amazon | Amazon UK

Blurb: Oliver Ryan is a handsome and charismatic success story. He lives in the suburbs with his wife, Alice, who illustrates his award-winning children's books and gives him her unstinting devotion. Their life together is one of enviable privilege and ease - enviable until, one evening after supper, Oliver attacks Alice and beats her into a coma.

In the aftermath, as everyone tries to make sense of his astonishing act of savagery, Oliver tells his story. So do those whose paths he has crossed over five decades. What unfolds is a story of shame, envy, breath-taking deception and masterful manipulation.

Only Oliver knows the lengths to which he has had to go to get the life to which he felt entitled. But even he is in for a shock when the past catches up with him.

Review: This past year I have had the pleasure of reading several amazing thrillers, like The Lie, The Girl on the Train or Evil Games to name some of my favourites, and I am glad to say that Unravelling Oliver will be added to this list. The story focuses on Oliver Ryan, a successful children books author. When we meet him, he has just beaten his wife into a coma even if he isn't sure why or how that happened. From that moment we start unravelling his story (I actually found the title genius, as it is exactly what the story does).

We travel to his childhood, to his teen years, to his university years and to France, where he spent a summer when he was young that marked this life forever. Little by little, we start scratching the surface of this intriguing character. While reading these little bits of information about his life, we enter his world, his mind, and it's difficult to let go. For a few days, even after finishing it, Oliver was all I could think about. It was like witnessing the birth of a monster. I was in his mind but he was in mind too. I tried to guess how he would respond to certain situations and tried to understand the understandable. But it turned out to be impossible. 

It was a read so difficult to put down. Cleverly written and engaging. If you enjoy a complex and tense thriller then you can't miss Unravelling Oliver. There is not a lot of action but it makes you held your breath more than once. And the mystery in the story makes you want to keep reading non-stop until you know all of Oliver's secrets. Once I finished it, I couldn't stop thinking and talking about Oliver and his secrets to everyone around me. They are certainly a book and a character that I will remember for a long time. 



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