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Into the Darkest Corner | [Elizabeth Haynes]

Into the Darkest Corner

Catherine has been enjoying the single life for long enough to know a good catch when she sees one. Gorgeous, charismatic, spontaneous – Lee seems almost too perfect to be true. And her friends clearly agree, as each in turn falls under his spell. But there is a darker side to Lee. His erratic, controlling and sometimes frightening behaviour means that Catherine is increasingly isolated. Driven into the darkest corner of her world, and trusting no one, she plans a meticulous escape.
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Publisher's Summary

AMAZON BOOK OF THE YEAR 2011

WINNER OF AMAZON RISING STARS 2011

AMAZON EDITORS' CHOICE BEST CRIME NOVEL OF 2011

LONGLISTED FOR CWA JOHN CREASEY (NEW BLOOD) DAGGER 2011

Catherine has been enjoying the single life for long enough to know a good catch when she sees one. Gorgeous, charismatic, spontaneous – Lee seems almost too perfect to be true. And her friends clearly agree, as each in turn falls under his spell.

But there is a darker side to Lee. His erratic, controlling and sometimes frightening behaviour means that Catherine is increasingly isolated. Driven into the darkest corner of her world, and trusting no one, she plans a meticulous escape. Four years later, struggling to overcome her demons, Catherine dares to believe she might be safe from harm. Until one phone call changes everything.

This is an edgy and powerful first novel, utterly convincing in its portrayal of obsession, and a tour de force of suspense.

©2012 Elizabeth Haynes (P)2012 Audible Ltd

What the Critics Say

"Check the locks on your doors and windows and surrender to this obsessive thriller." (Karin Slaughter)

“This intense, gripping account of domestic violence and its aftermath is utterly unputdownable. A stunning debut.” (SJ Watson)

“From its uncompromising prologue - a young woman being bludgeoned to death in a ditch - Haynes's powerful account of domestic violence is disquieting, yet unsensationalist. This is a gripping book on a topic which can never be highlighted enough.” (Guardian)

“A very impressive first novel. The pain and frustration of OCD is brilliantly evoked and I winced every time Cathy embarked on yet another ritual. The contrast between Cathy's two lives is cleverly drawn and the hesitancy in her new relationship is very believable. This is a fantastic personal read with plenty for a reading group to discuss.” (NewBooks Magazine)

“Within ten minutes I couldn't put it down. I've always said that I would never be caught in an abusive relationship, as I'd be out of it at the first sign of a problem but after reading this book I realised that it really isn't that simple. There's a superb picture of the burdens of OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). It's not enough to check once that the door is firmly locked. What if you didn't lock it properly? There's real dramatic tension in this book and when I got to the end the first thing that I did was to turn back to the beginning again.” (The Bookbag)

“A tense and thought-provoking début novel with dark moments. Its portrayal of obsession is one that will send a shiver down your spine and you'll hope that you are never in that position. But don't look for a "pat" ending - it seems that things never end the way one hopes! This début novel by a police intelligence analyst is certainly well worth the read.” (Shotsmag)

“Our South coast-based book group had been starved of a good book for a month or two, so it was with some excitement that we stumbled across the buzz on Twitter about Elizabeth Haynes' compelling debut novel Into the Darkest Corner. Thankfully starvation swiftly changed to gluttony when we got our hands on the book, as this is a compulsive thriller with sufficient twists and plot turns to keep the most action-avaricious of readers satisfied.” (Bookgroup.info)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (1254 )
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4.1 (1057 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Marilyn 07-02-12
    Marilyn 07-02-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    23
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    11
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    "Very suspenseful! Wonderful narrator!"

    The reviews that talk about the confusing nature of the back and forth in time are correct. But if you will just keep in mind that 2008 is current and 2004 is looking back you will be fine. And the confusion is well worth it. Stick with it for an hour and it won't be a problem after that. This was a great book and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The narrator can make or break a book and this one is excellent. The suspense at times had me afraid to drive! Because of the back and forth in time, you know what is coming and you stay braced for it. Go for it - it is quite long and I still did not want it to end!

    10 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joanne Burlington, Ontario, Canada 06-24-12
    Joanne Burlington, Ontario, Canada 06-24-12 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    282
    ratings
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    40
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    10
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    Performance
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    "Good but a little too predictable"

    This book is pretty good from a performance and "construction" perspective. Exploring the topic of abuse, Ms. Haynes creates a set of characters that ably illustrate both the context and the effect of such abuse. The performance is very good. In some ways, the novel feels like a creative writing project for which high marks would have been given; however, outside of the "classroom", the novel is a little too forced.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Taryn Suffern, NY, United States 06-09-12
    Taryn Suffern, NY, United States 06-09-12 Member Since 2006

    Addicted to Audible!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1425
    ratings
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    344
    186
    FOLLOWERS
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    "Tried Three Times"

    I don't understand the hype on this book. I generally have no problem following audio books that have complicated plots- but with this one I was totally unable to follow the story. The constant volley between past and present with a reader who really didnt change intonation was just too confusing to me. I listened to an hour then started over, listened to it again for another hour and started over and then decided it was not worth any more of my time. The character was hard to relate to and unlikeable and the plot simply boring. I do NOT recommend wasting your credits on this one.

    30 of 41 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracy Canada 10-09-12
    Tracy Canada 10-09-12 Member Since 2012

    A long time reader and listener - I just can't get enough of Audible! (Especially mysteries and Buddhist texts and history and ...etc!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    47
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    Story
    "Un-Put-Downable!"

    I usually like cozy mysteries, or police procedurals, or, in any case, straight-up mysteries.

    But this book looked like it would be suspenseful and a bit different. And it so totally was!

    I loved the way the story unfolded, going between Catherine (four years ago) and Cathy now. And we, the reader, know what happened, we feel it. So we feel it coming, and we already know the effect it had on Cathy, but how will this all culminate in the climax??

    The narration was well done, BUT at one point there was a cough. I didn't know if it was the character or the reader (I suspect the narrator). And occasionally she (the narrator) didn't change voice/intonation between characters. But mostly it was very very good.

    One reviewer felt that the book was hard to follow - I didn't find this to be the case, but I realize that you DO have to listen for the dates, so you know the "now and then". It helps to know when you start listening that the two seemingly different central narrating characters are the same woman, just changed by trauma.

    In any case, I could not stop listening to this book. I stayed up extra-late, and kept telling myself, "Just half an hour more, then I'll go to bed...". Ha.

    I highly recommend this book if you like suspenseful stories, and you don't mind knowing who the bad guy is from the beginning.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annette 08-22-12
    Annette 08-22-12

    I'm trying to wean myself and learn to function without earbuds for more than ten minutes at a time. It hasn't been easy. I lose balance...

    HELPFUL VOTES
    399
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    "a little girl power in the domestic abuse arena"

    Not my usual genre. But a good read for a long drive and overall a nice setup. Since the book starts with a murder, the end does take some time to unravel (which is nice). Most of the story is about this girl finding her strength amid serious domestic abuse. There were times when the plot was a wee bit thin on "why don't you get out," but mostly it's a good yarn and well read.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mindusq san francisco 01-29-13
    mindusq san francisco 01-29-13 Member Since 2008

    Typical cat lady: lazy, sings off-key, craves spicy bloody marys.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    257
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    61
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    "Will make a great, scary movie when it comes out!"

    It's interesting to note that Elizabeth Haynes is (was?) in law enforcement, lending more veracity to the chilling story of a young woman in the grips of PTSD. Her penchant for detail allows us to see into the interiors of the bars, houses, and along the cold English shore woven into this thriller--most definitely cinematic. Although the novel is suspenseful, some of the characters are simply foils for the main character, Cathy, who struggles with debilitating fear. Having just recently been robbed while I was asleep in my home, the whole "what was that noise?" really resonated with me. Frightening.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Delilah Boston, MA 12-12-12
    Delilah Boston, MA 12-12-12 Member Since 2013

    Dissonant Muse

    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
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    51
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    "Surprisingly Gripping Without the Usual Tricks"

    I'll admit that I'm normally a sucker for more obvious tropes in my thrillers. With no immediately discernible evil psychopath and no readers claiming it to be disturbingly dark and gory, had this book not been reviewed so well, I may have passed it by. The remarkably believable character development and internal monologues are what immediately grabbed me about Into the Darkest Corner, and the narrator was positively brilliant, a perfect voice for the protagonist.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stevon Tempe, AZ, United States 09-29-12
    Stevon Tempe, AZ, United States 09-29-12 Member Since 2015

    I love books!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    533
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    303
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    "Intense"

    A debut novel so a first time author for me. It had great critical acclaim so I had to give it a shot. It was really intense, a page turner that was so intense you sometimes had to take a break from it. It was very sexually explicit. You'd hope there aren't really people like this in the world but i suppose there are. Will look forward to the next book by E Haynes.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jami E. Nettles Columbus, MS USA 09-05-12
    Jami E. Nettles Columbus, MS USA 09-05-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    563
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    "Spot on pacing makes story really work"

    The story trajectory is set up in the first few chapters, so there is no major reveal to keep you on the edge of the seat. The author keeps it interesting with character development and story details. It's not perfect - the main character's mental health changes were implausible and overdone - but I found it an enjoyable and intelligent book overall and recommend it.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hassan 08-27-12
    Hassan 08-27-12 Member Since 2015

    5 stars is i love and i will read agani and again. 1 is i hate and i never want to hear about it ever again. YES = :))) - NO= :'(

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Book and A GREAT Narrator"

    I loved this book for many reasons.
    1-Great Story
    2-How one person could change completely from normal to a high case of OCD
    3-THE Narrator WAS SOOOOO GOOOOOD. loved the accent and she did a great job in this book.

    and so many other reasons, but its better to grab this book and have a listen to it....

    P.S. focus on the years as you might get confused in the beginning of the book.

    Cheers and Enjoy.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-20 of 153 results PREVIOUS12316NEXT
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  • Emma
    essex, United Kingdom
    3/26/12
    Overall
    "Gripping"

    I was unsure what to say in this review. To say I enjoyed listening to this seems wrong somehow, yet I really did enjoy it. At times it had me in tears and is quite harrrowing in places, especially thinking about the thousands of people going through abuse like this every day. I am not sure it really needed the two narrators as I thought the main one was very good.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Clodagh
    leixlip, Ireland
    5/5/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing!"

    I strongly recommend this audio book. It was captivating from beginning to end. An absolute delight to listen to

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Gill
    sabden, United Kingdom
    1/2/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Negative comments not merited, I loved it!"

    I loved this book. The story was gripping and was just graphic enough in detail to make it real. The swearing was needed to keep the edge and reflect the aggression. I particularly liked the use of the different dates and the different style used for the court case at the end. I certainly dont agree it was confusing. Given the varied quality of audio books I thought the negative reviews are not at all merited.

    If I had a complaint it would be the Lancashire accent which sometimes missed but it was good enough. But then I do have a true Lancashire accent!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Alex J. Littlewood
    Bradford
    11/28/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Another cracker from Elizabeth Haynes"
    Would you listen to Into the Darkest Corner again? Why?

    The story is one that captivates you from the off. A story that can and has happened in real life and the characters each bringing their own slant to the story. True life situations especially those suffering from OCD will relate to aspect of the book. A must read for all fans of the genre


    What other book might you compare Into the Darkest Corner to, and why?

    Cant say ive read one with a similar story but recommendations would be Human Remains also by Ms Haynes which had me hooked from start to finish


    Have you listened to any of David Thorpe and Karen Cass ’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    I have listened to Karan Cass twice before and she gives a flawless performance in this book with accents and variations for each character. David's performance is similar although his part is smaller that that of Ms Cass


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Danger lurks around every corner, so check it six times


    Any additional comments?

    I would urge you to read Human Remains by the same author. First class read.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Alan
    BASINGSTOKE, United Kingdom
    10/18/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "well im enjoying it!!"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    no


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    would not have changed it.


    What aspect of David Thorpe and Karen Cass ’s performance might you have changed?

    karens tone grated a little, but not enough for me to switch off.


    Did Into the Darkest Corner inspire you to do anything?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    only reason for me to comment is that i thought all the negative reviews were not justified.Its not the best audio download I've ever listened to, but its certainly not the worst either.Also made me aware of the serous ramifications of domestic violence.Im 'mid listen' at the moment, and have no intention of not completing the book.Well done Elizabeth Haynes.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • L. H. De Laune
    UK
    10/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Utterly Compelling listening"
    Any additional comments?

    I found this book extremely gripping and tense, and the author managed to keep the tension going by the clever use of past and present tense. As soon as I'd finished it I wanted to listen to the opening paragraphs again. The difficult subject matter was handled intelligently, and I was never irritated by Catherine's compulsions. It was really hard to believe this character would get the 'happy ever after' we so wanted for her... but I won't spoil it for you!
    Took it on holiday, and consequently barely spoke to my poor husband for the first two days, as I couldn't stop listening until I knew the outcome for Catherine.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Gloria
    Didcot, United Kingdom
    3/7/12
    Overall
    "Into the darkest corner"

    This was a very good book well written and very well read. If I have one critiscism it is that too many four letter words were used. I have no objection at all to strong language in fact it makes the story and characters more believable but in many cases less is more.However, I will watch with great interest for the next novel from this author.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Mandie
    United States
    3/18/12
    Overall
    "Good Story Spoiled"

    Overall I almost enjoyed this book, but the strong desire to turn off happened more than once. The two different narrators was confusing especially when at one moment Sylvia was being done in a woman's voice and I knew who she was, to being done in a man's voice during the chapters done in court. Also the constant naming of who was speaking every time the character changed in the court chapters was just simply annoying, we should not need "Miss Bartlett", "Mrs Scott" etc etc before every sentence to know who was speaking, the narrator should be able to convey this. Not sure why the narrator changed, would have been preferable for the female narrator to continue throughout the whole book. I also found the great overuse of the "F" word thoughout the book completely unneccesary. I could see the point in the darker sides to the story but at the beginning and throughout most of the book, using bad language was not required. All in all I persevered to the end of this book but would not recommend unless you had nothing better to listen to.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Lee
    IPSWICH, United Kingdom
    4/10/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Meanders all over the place"
    What disappointed you about Into the Darkest Corner?

    The story jumped backwards and forwards. Was not sure whether I was more annoyed by the pathetic heroine or the author.


    What could Elizabeth Haynes have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Written in a straight line so that the reader had a chance to follow the plot. Make the heroine less " really annoying".


    What character would you cut from Into the Darkest Corner?

    The main characters - expected to hate him but after 5 chapters he had only been in the prologue. She I really hated very early on, her ACD was very annoying when read out. Think tap tap ad naseum.


    Any additional comments?

    Do not bother it does not convert well to an audio book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Vivienne
    Esporles, Spain
    3/13/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Threatening, menacing, chilling and so possible!"
    Any additional comments?

    The narration was excellent with all the accents very authentic. The phrasing during moments of terror or pleading were excellent. It took a little while to get into the story and it was difficult to understand why we had to listen to the repetetive processes of the main character until we discovered why. At times I was puzzled as to why Catherine went from a trembling mess to someone that was able to confront dangerous situations without letting anyone know where she was going or a phone call to the police. Apart from this, the story was very convincing, very modern and at times difficult to listen to, such was the terror portrayed by the narrator. Would thoroughly recommend it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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