Book Review | Her Every Fear

Author // Peter Swanson
Publication Month // January 25, 2017
Publisher // Faber & Faber
Australian RRP // $29.99 AUD
Genre // Thriller, Suspense


The bestselling author of The Kind Worth Killing returns with an electrifying psychological thriller – as tantalizing as Rear Window or The Girl on the Train. 

Following a brutal attack by her ex-boyfriend, Kate Priddy makes an uncharacteristically bold decision after her cousin, Corbin Dell, suggests a temporary apartment swap – and she moves from London to Boston.

But soon after her arrival Kate makes a shocking discovery: Corbin’s next-door neighbour, a young woman named Audrey Marshall, has been murdered. When the police begin asking questions about Corbin’s relationship with Audrey, and his neighbours come forward with their own suspicions, a shaken Kate has few answers, and many questions of her own. Jetlagged and emotionally unstable, her imagination playing out her every fear, Kate can barely trust herself. So how can she trust any of the strangers she’s just met? In the tradition of such greats as Gillian Flynn and Harlan Coben, Patricia Highsmith and James M. Cain, Her Every Fear is a scintillating novel, rich with the chilling insight and virtuoso skill for plotting that has propelled Peter Swanson to the highest ranks of thriller writing.


Her Every Fear is a suspense-filled story of murder and mystery, as seen through multiple perspectives.

Peter Swanson’s book opens with main character, Kate Priddy, arriving in Boston after have decided to swap apartments with a cousin she’s never met for six months. Kate stays in his beautifully appointed apartment complex, while her cousin, Corbin, takes up residence in her small apartment in London. The move is a big one for Kate, who, having suffered and survived an attack from her ex-boyfriend, is left riddled with anxiety and fear – two things only exacerbated by the death of one of Corbin’s neighbours as she arrives in Boston. The police begin investigating, leading to Kate beginning to question her unknown cousin and whether or not he might be involved. Meanwhile, Corbin has his own secrets that he relives upon his arrival in London.

This was a unique story, told from multiple perspectives. It’s incredibly character-driven; each time the perspective changes, we relive the known events from a new angle, giving us further insight into not only the characters but the bits of the puzzle that we were missing when reading from previous characters. There is quite a bit of repetitiveness, so if that’s something that bothers you then be aware of it going in as it does slow the pace a lot. By the end I almost wished that the story would push on further rather than linger in the past, but I can understand Swanson’s motivations and there is a beauty in a narrative being written from many perspectives.

I love the complexity of the characters within the story, especially Kate, who suffered anxiety prior to the attack by her ex-boyfriend – the details of which are slowly revealed throughout the story – which has only be exacerbated. There’s a real sense of claustrophobia for her character, as she finds herself in a foreign country, surrounded by people she doesn’t know, a murder next door and the lingering question as to whether her cousin has played a part in the plot. She needs to find answers or live afraid.

Overall, Her Every Fear was a great read. Suspenseful, with great, complex characters. I gave it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Her Every Fear was sent to me by Allen & Unwin in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts are my own.

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