Title: The Imposter
Author: Anna Wharton
Publication Date: 1st April 2021
They say you can’t choose your family . . . But what if they’re wrong?
Chloe lives a quiet life. Working as a newspaper archivist in the day and taking care of her nan in the evening, she’s happy simply to read about the lives of others as she files the news clippings from the safety of her desk.
But there’s one story that she can’t stop thinking about. The case of Angie Kyle – a girl, Chloe’s age, who went missing as a child. A girl whose parents never gave up hope.
When Chloe’s nan is moved into care, leaving Chloe on the brink of homelessness, she takes a desperate step: answering an ad to be a lodger in the missing girl’s family home. It could be the perfect opportunity to get closer to the story she’s read so much about. But it’s not long until she realizes this couple isn’t all they seem. In a house where everyone has something to hide, is it possible to get too close?
I was so intrigued by the premise of The Imposter and I’m pleased to say that, for me, the book totally lived up to my high expectations! The story follows newspaper archivist Chloe who becomes obsessed with a decades old story of a missing girl. As Chloe dives deeper into her investigation she comes across an advert from the missing girl’s parents offering a room for rent in their home. Chloe cannot stop herself from taking the opportunity to ingratiate herself into their lives and solve the mystery of their lost daughter. Things get even stranger from there on in.
I loved this book – my favourite thing about it is the overwhelming atmosphere of creeping dread which grows the further into the story you read. Chloe is an odd woman, to say the least. She definitely has the feel of a slightly unreliable narrator and whilst the missing girl’s parents, Maureen and Patrick are suspicious in their own right, it is Chloe who I found myself constantly second guessing and thoroughly unsettled by. She lives an isolated and lonely life with her nan as the only family she appears to have. Her compulsive fascination with the missing Angela is decidedly weird and her mission to solve the case comes across as simultaneously creepy and sympathetic. Once Chloe moves into the Kyle’s house the tension build and builds until we finally start to understand what secrets Angela’s parents are hiding and who Chloe herself really is. I found myself totally engrossed in the story – it is darkly compelling and actually has quite a chilling and spooky feel to it. I think anyone who loves a quietly disconcerting thriller will very much enjoy The Imposter – I certainly did.
Thank you so much to Anne Cater of Random Things Blog Tours for inviting me on this tour and organising it. I kindly received a copy of the book from the publisher. My review is entirely my own honest opinion.