Paperback, 410 pages
Published January 2nd 2013 by Harper (first published January 1st 2011)
Original Title: Into the Darkest Corner
Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes is one of the most spine chilling and riveting novels I’ve read in a long time. The story centers on Catherine set in the past and the present 4 years apart. In the past Catherine is a fun-loving party person who lives in the moment. After going out to one pub she meets a handsome doorman called Lee who she falls for. Initially their relationship is very sexual and very casual but over time that changes. Catherine soon feels loved and valued by Lee but overtime the relationship becomes suffocating for her as he first mentally then physically changes her into the person she is 4 years later. lee goes to extraordinary lengths to control Catherine using his experience in the police to ensure this while convincing her friends that she is going funny, all of which together pushes her into the darkest corner.
Four years later and Lee is behind bars and Catherine in a new location is a shadow of her former self with her time with him having a terrible effect on her. Catherine in effect is trying to hide away suffering from ocd which shows itself with her constantly checking the locks in her flat the curtains and her front door. Apart from her work Catherine never goes out but despite this thing start to pick up for her after she meets Stuart a nice man upstairs from her. With Stuart’s help Catherine slowly works on overcoming her anxiety. This progress will be tested though when she is informed by phone of the worst news imaginable, something that has the ability to set her back and bring back the horrors of the not so distant past.
A word of warning right from the start this is not the sought of book for the sensitive or faint hearted. Right from the opening passage we are presented with a brutal murder of a women described is such detail the likes I’ve not read since Kill Me Once. But if you are not put of by that than you will be rewarded with what is a fabulous read. The book for one was for me the most real in terms of storyline and characters I’ve read. I just wanted to hug Catherine and be there for her and in truth didn’t even care for the plot which was equally first class with Lee being the perfect villain. Haynes did a brilliant job of building Lee up from what seems a charming loving man into what he really was, manipulative, controlling and violent. At no stage, did I find the story unbelievable and found myself constantly frightened for Catherine. While I new something was going to happen towards the end I was shocked on how it all panned out. At times, I almost felt I didn’t want to read it but I just couldn’t stop for what despite the violence and the physiological effects i found to be a beautiful read. If you have ever wondered why women in many cases cannot just walk away from a violent relationship, then Into the Darkest Corner will give you a great insight into answering that.