Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

29437949Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace: he has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You’d like to get to know Grace better. But it’s difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are never apart. Some might call this true love.

Picture this: a dinner party at their perfect home, the conversation and wine flowing. They appear to be in their element while entertaining. And Grace’s friends are eager to reciprocate with lunch the following week. Grace wants to go, but knows she never will. Her friends call—so why doesn’t Grace ever answer the phone? And how can she cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim?

And why are there bars on one of the bedroom windows?

The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

Despite the fact that, no, I don’t know a couple like Jack and Grace (I obviously don’t mix in the right circles), I was still drawn to this book because of excellent reviews when it first came out.  It’s been on hold at the library for a while and so I was excited when it was finally available.  Overall, I have to say the wait was definitely worth it.

This is a fairly quick read – I managed it in just over a day – and a good one.  Tightly plotted, it moves at quite a pace, and builds the tension right through to the end.  All very good for a debut novel.  It also presents a pretty disturbed world and does make you wonder what is happening behind the curtains of the people you know, your neighbours on the street.  I spent a lot of time thinking Jack couldn’t get any worse or be any crueller.

All that said, and possibly because it’s a debut, I don’t think that the characters are as well developed as I would have liked.  Jack is the stereotypical good looking, wealthy, man you find in these domestic thrillers – perfect to the point of being annoying and just a little sickly – and Grace is the woman who falls under his thrall way too quickly because of her own personal baggage. I would have liked to see a little more here that made me feel I could relate to them (I couldn’t).  By the end, I was seeing it with Grace but it would have been nice so see it sooner as she was the main (only) narrator.

Still, it didn’t stop me reading or enjoying the book and I will definitely pick up B. A. Paris’ next offering as I have a feeling she is one to watch because, at it’s heart, this was a good story and a good book, one I liked and would recommend.



About the book…

Publisher: St. Martins Press
336 (kindle)
Published on:
11th February, 2016

  1. The premise sounds chilling – but as you point out, it’s all about the characters so if you feel a tad removed from them then it must somewhat muffle the impact. Good review.

    1. It does but it was a real page turner and a short book. It’s only after you put it down you start to realise you wish you had had more.

  2. I have been wanting to try this one so I am glad you still enjoyed it despite the lack of good character developement.

    1. I did. It was such a quick read that you almost don’t have time to think about the characters till you finish if that makes sense?

  3. I loved this one, and I agree that we could have seen more from the characters. I often wonder why these women fall for creatures like Jack, since that surface charm must be a dead giveaway. Right? But it makes for a good story, too, having the characters make bad choices. Thanks for sharing! Great review.

    1. I think the same thing. I will be raising my daughter to only date ugly men with no money!

  4. Great review. I loved this one and more because it is a debut, can’t wait for more from BA Paris. I am stunned at how many women fall for men like this but it happens all the time. I laugh at the thought that everyone knows a couple like them, I sure as heck hope not 🙂 We could have had more with the characters but the intensity was perfection. I also loved Millie, the sister.

  5. It does sound interesting Emma. Is it very predictable I wonder? I worry it would be.

    1. It’s probably half and half. The fact he’s gorgeous and rich and basically evil is the predictable bit. The non-predictable bits are that it goes straight into him being evil vs. Slowly revealing it and also the end which is a bit more subtle than the last minute fight scene with the woman in peril. Not sure if that helps?

  6. […] wise this week, I posted two reviews. Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris was one I had rea lots of good reviews of earlier this year and enjoyed. It was a real page turner […]

  7. They had a great Cyber Monday deal for the ebook version of this yesterday on Amazon so I snapped it up for just a couple bucks. Since you’re review of it is that it’s solid and not great, I’m glad I didn’t spend more on it 🙂 thanks for the review!

    1. Definitely worth a few dollars. I wouldn’t have minded if I’d paid for it (vs. The library).

  8. […] Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris, a good debut that shows we never really know what happens between a couple when the doors and curtains are closed – this was a real page turner, I would just have liked a little more character development. […]

  9. […] week I am introducing The Breakdown by B. A. Paris, whose first book Behind Closed Doors was a pretty big hit last year.  Here’s what it’s […]

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