Author: Jessica Moor
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Publisher: Penguin, Viking
Publication Date: 19th March 2020
He’s been looking in the windows again. Messing with cameras. Leaving notes.
Supposed to be a refuge. But death got inside.
When Katie Straw’s body is pulled from the waters of the local suicide spot, the police decide it’s an open-and-shut case. A standard-issue female suicide.
But the residents of Widringham women’s refuge where Katie worked don’t agree. They say it’s murder.
Will you listen to them?
Keeper has been getting a lot of buzz lately and now having read it, I believe that buzz is more than justified. We know from the very beginning how Katie’s story ends. Her body is pulled from a river in what looks like an obvious case of suicide but what Keeper slowly reveals is how she ended up where she did and why. The narrative follows two timelines, one in the present day as the police try to piece together Katie’s life and the other in the past as she meets and falls into a relationship with Jamie that becomes more and more dangerous.
I’m not going to pretend this is a cheerful book in any way, it’s not. It is bleak, it is disturbing and at times depressing but is absolutely has to be those things because for it to be anything else would feel disingenuous. Domestic violence is more commonplace than I think many of us are aware of and there needs to be more and more done to put a stop to it and the only way to start doing that is to make people acknowledge the severity of the issue and also that it can appear in many different forms. There is no ‘one size fits all’ in abuse. Keeper gives us the stories of several other women besides Katie with differing but equally valid histories.
I got so angry reading this book, as I’m sure most readers will, because it really drives home the point that for far too many women, it is already too late and that is a deeply upsetting thought. Keeper is fantastically well written, there is a sense of foreboding and unease that creeps in all the way through the book and is especially present in the chapters chronicling Katie and Jamie’s relationship. This novel is a realistic and vital look at the reality of a situation I am very much hoping will get better and one of the best ways to move that forward is awareness which reading books like Keeper provide. An intelligent, gripping and important read – absolutely recommend.
I received this e-arc through Netgalley. My review is my own honest opinion.