Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Girl on the Stairs by Louise Welsh

Wow, this was a good book!!!!!!!!!( Contain's spoilers).. I volunteered to review it, I just loved the cover..
The story begins with our main character Jane as she leaves  Scotland to be with her lover Petra in Berlin. They are expecting a baby and she is around seven and a half months pregnant.
Jane  first sees her neighbour Anna Mann outside their building and something about this thirteen year old worries Jane even though she can't quite put her finger on what exactly.

Not long after Jane first saw Anna she  over hears Anna's father calling her names and the next time she sees Anna, Anna has a bruise on her face that Jane suspects was given to her by her father Alban Mann who is a doctor .Jane soon learns that Anna  has a habit of running away and Jane comes across her one evening in the company of three dubious looking men. Anna seems to care little for her own safety and that worries Jane esp as she is so young, and from her experience Anna's behaviour has all the characteristics of an abused child. .
Petra is becoming more worried about Jane not taking more care of herself and putting herself at risk by the places she has been going to since arriving in Berlin while following Anna.Petra is worried about the amount of concern Jane is giving to Anna when she should be more concerned about their child that she is carrying. It is causing a strain in their relationship ,so when Petra leaves to go away on business she gets her twin brother to come and check up on Jane.

While Petra is gone Jane gets talking to one of her elderly neighbours who believes that Anna's mother was murdered by Alban Mann ,and that her body never left the building, and in fact may  be buried there. ... Slightly alarmed by this news from her slightly mentally ill neighbour Jane cannot quite find the will to ignore her suspicions about Anna and her family..Something is not right there and she wants to find out what. Something makes her uncomfortable about Anna's relationship with her father too and where Anna's missing mother ended up.

After an anonymous call to social services brings social workers to Alban's door, the following day the police show up at Jane's door accusing her of harassing Dr Mann.
The storyline then really begins to get interesting and the tension is well and truly mounting.. All ideas I had about getting up and putting on the kettle were forgotten about as I was well and truly gripped..  .The story was a  real page turner and I could not put it down for a minute .There are long buried secrets ,and strange behaviour, deaths, and a number of mysteries, and a very sad past to this building where they all live..
 Towards the end of the book I did not expect things to go as they did, and that really surprised me , I finished the book with a satisfied feeling. This was everything I could have ever hoped for in a thriller/fiction type book. It will definitely be one I read again, and I can't wait to pick up some other books by this author!! If you enjoy a thriller with a creepy building and strange things going on with the neighbours then I urge you to read this book. It won't let you rest for a minute!!!!

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