Watching You
by Lisa Jewell

Overview - "Quickly and assuredly, Jewell builds an ecosystem of countervailing suspicions...Tricky, clever, unexpected." -- New York Times Book Review

"Brace yourself as Jewell stacks up the secrets, then lights a long, slow fuse." -- People

"A seize-you-by-the-throat thriller and a genuinely moving family drama." --A.J.  Read more...

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More About Watching You by Lisa Jewell
"Quickly and assuredly, Jewell builds an ecosystem of countervailing suspicions...Tricky, clever, unexpected." --New York Times Book Review

"Brace yourself as Jewell stacks up the secrets, then lights a long, slow fuse." --People

"A seize-you-by-the-throat thriller and a genuinely moving family drama." --A.J. Finn, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Woman in the Window

The instant New York Times and #1 Sunday Times bestselling author of the Then She Was Gone delivers another suspenseful page-turner about a shocking murder in a picturesque and well-to-do English town, perfect "for fans of Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, and Luckiest Girl Alive" (Library Journal).

Melville Heights is one of the nicest neighborhoods in Bristol, England; home to doctors and lawyers and old-money academics. It's not the sort of place where people are brutally murdered in their own kitchens. But it is the sort of place where everyone has a secret. And everyone is watching you.

As the headmaster credited with turning around the local school, Tom Fitzwilliam is beloved by one and all--including Joey Mullen, his new neighbor, who quickly develops an intense infatuation with this thoroughly charming yet unavailable man. Joey thinks her crush is a secret, but Tom's teenaged son Freddie--a prodigy with aspirations of becoming a spy for MI5--excels in observing people and has witnessed Joey behaving strangely around his father.

One of Tom's students, Jenna Tripp, also lives on the same street, and she's not convinced her teacher is as squeaky clean as he seems. For one thing, he has taken a particular liking to her best friend and fellow classmate, and Jenna's mother--whose mental health has admittedly been deteriorating in recent years--is convinced that Mr. Fitzwilliam is stalking her.

Meanwhile, twenty years earlier, a schoolgirl writes in her diary, charting her doomed obsession with a handsome young English teacher named Mr. Fitzwilliam...

In Lisa Jewell's latest brilliant "bone-chilling suspense" (People) no one is who they seem--and everyone is hiding something. Who has been murdered--and who would have wanted one of their neighbors dead? As "Jewell teases out her twisty plot at just the right pace" (Booklist, starred review), you will be kept guessing until the startling revelation on the very last page.

  • ISBN-13: 9781501190070
  • ISBN-10: 1501190075
  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publish Date: December 2018
  • Page Count: 336
  • Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.2 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.08 pounds

Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Women
Books > Fiction > Thrillers - Suspense
Books > Fiction > Family Life - General

BookPage Reviews

Watching You

Lisa Jewell’s domestic thrillers regularly show up on bestseller lists, and her latest, Watching You, should be no exception. The mysterious murder at its center unfolds gradually, as piece by piece the past and present relationships between her intriguing cast of characters begin to fit together.

Tom Fitzwilliam is the new headmaster of the Melville Academy in Bristol, England, and he’s called Superhead by the local newspaper due to his many postings to failing schools and his reputation for quickly turning them around. Tom lives with his wife, Nicola, in an upscale neighborhood. Nicola is an enigmatic, unhappy woman with a troubled past. Their only child, 14-year-old Freddie, believes he has Asperger’s. He hopes to work for MI5 one day and spends all his free time spying on the neighbors from his upstairs window, documenting what he sees with his camera and keeping a logbook of the neighborhood comings and goings.

One of Freddie’s voyeuristic targets is Joey Mullen, a young woman who lives two doors down from the Fitzwilliams. Joey is newly married and drifting from job to job. She and her husband live with Joey’s older brother, Jack, a physician, and his wife, Rebecca, a “strait-laced systems analyst.” Rebecca is pregnant, but she’s apparently not overjoyed about becoming a mother. Joey is completely smitten with Tom Fitzwilliam and begins planning how to meet him “accidentally,” which is all documented by Freddie’s watchful eyes.

Sixteen-year-old Jenna, a student at the Academy, and her mother live nearby, and they’re also subjects of Freddie’s surveillance. Jenna’s mother, who increasingly shows signs of paranoia, seems to believe she saw the Fitzwilliam family on holiday years ago, and that they were involved in an unpleasant incident that she can’t quite remember.

From the novel’s early pages, Jewell includes excerpts from police interviews conducted at the Bristol police station. The reader knows someone has been murdered but not their identity. Little by little, Jewell sprinkles clues about the pasts of each of her characters, and these hidden connections to the victim may turn out to be motives to commit murder. But only near the end does one suspect emerge as the killer—and a shocking final revelation completely takes the reader by surprise.

Jewell’s latest will be quickly devoured by readers of Gillian Flynn, A.J. Finn and Ruth Ware.


This article was originally published in the January 2019 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

BAM Customer Reviews