Cover Image: The House Fire

The House Fire

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Member Reviews

This was a read in one sitting for me I found it to be hugely addictive and just had to keep reading to see what happens.

It is a multi point of view story featuring one family and their ongoing drama, a new marriage causes a riff, meanwhile there's an arsonist lurking in the shadows.

I raced through those grasshopper on acid style, finding the different ways the characters viewed things made it stay interesting and unpredictable throughout.

The characters are clearly defined and compelling which is always good. If I had one slight thing it was I felt the end was a little messy but other than that this is a really great read.
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Thank you Netgalley  ,Next Chapter and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book for an an honest review.  Jamie and Cleo have a new step dad. Their mother thinks he is the perfect husband. He has given Jamie and her boyfriend Spider  funding to make a documentary about the mystery of a local arsonist who has been plaguing the village and surrounds for many years. Cleo is not happy with her new step dad and tries to make the family see him for who he really is. Who is this person who seems so perfect but is he really ? A complex well written book dealing with a difficult subject. Highly recommend. 5 stars
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Wow, not at all what I expected. Jamie & her boyfriend Spider are working on a documentary about arson that occurred in the 80’s, but suddenly history begins to repeat itself. There are new & recent fires, and people start to get closer than they should.

Jamie’s sister Cleo is convinced her new stepfather is an evil man, somehow involved with the recent happenings around town. She starts to see odd behaviors with her mom, or is she simply imagining these things? 

The story absolutely took a turn towards the end, what I thought was a story of mystery around arson, turned into a story of manipulation and domestic violence. Overall something that needs to be addressed, but I feel that the book did so in a very odd way
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I received an advanced reader’s copy in exchange for an honest review 

I loved this one. Very fast paced, had me turning pages as I tore through it – I had to see how it would end.  The characters were well rounded and the narrative felt believable. Gave me chills. Solid five
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What's it about (in a nutshell):
The House Fire by Rosie Walker is a psychological thriller about an arson cold case that kept me guessing until the end.

What I Enjoyed:
There are three narrators of this complex and compelling tale: two sisters, Jamie and Cleo, and the arsonist.  I loved the chapters where the arsonist takes over the story because it helped build suspense early in the story.  It also helped develop the character without the reader even knowing the identity of this person.  Jamie is doing a documentary on a group of connected arsons and possible suspects. Cleo is the little sister trying to prove that her new stepfather is someone who can't be trusted.  All three of these perspectives come together in expected and unexpected ways. That is why it was difficult for me to pinpoint the culprit.

I enjoyed the sisters' interactions.  They always felt incredibly genuine even when the younger sister, Cleo, acted over the top, as is consistent with her age.  The sisters have a bond that is palpable and true.

The pace starts off a bit slow, but it is made faster by the chapters where the arsonist begins telling their tale. Around the halfway point, the thriller takes off, and I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. I loved when the pace picked up as I always enjoy a good page-turner.

Lastly, I adored the very creepy ending.  I can't say that I didn't guess it was possible, but it didn't change how chilling it is when delivered.  I love a creepy open-ended conclusion, and in this regard, The House Fire delivered.

Characters:
All of the characters are reasonably well-developed, enough to understand their motivations but not so much that I was able to guess the culprit until a few pages before the big reveal.  The sisters are very complex, and I particularly like Jamie, independent and determined.  All of the parents and stepparents are anything but sympathetic and the boyfriends, Spider and Lucasz, add an exciting element to the story that I rather enjoyed.

Reminds Me Of:
The House Fire reminds me of the author's first book, Secrets of a Serial Killer, but even better.

What I Wish:
I wish the pace had been fast from start to finish because I love a story that sucks me in and keeps me glued to the page from the very beginning. This one didn't pull me in entirely until about the 50% mark.

To Read or Not to Read:
If you love an edge of your seat psychological thriller that keeps you guessing up until the very end, The House Fire is a story you are sure to enjoy.
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Please do not misunderstand most of the rest of this review as I both hated and loved this book, why else would it rate 5 Stars?

This was a difficult book for me to read as it is too full of people that are far too close to real people, many of whom I know!! I tried very hard to read it from beginning to end but had to read it in chunks because I frequently became incensed at the behaviour of the main characters. Again, not because their behaviour was far fetched but because it was far too accurate.

There certainly is a sting in the tail/tale and whilst I almost went down the wrong track, all became clear and my blood pressure and breathing returned to normal.

Cannot suggest that this book will be an easy read, if my experience is anything to go by, but it is 100% worth your effort as you too will likely recognise people that you know and have confirmed why they behave they way that they do.
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If this cover doesn't grab your attention, what will?  Well, if you read this book, and you should, the string of deceptions and secrets will have you itching to get to the denouement.  And what an ending it is!  There were more twists than a stone staircase in an old castle and the suspense kept me pleasantly on edge.  

Sisters Cleo and Jamie live with their recently-remarried mum and their new step dad.  Tiny cracks begin to show in relationships and fester, snowballing as the story goes on.  Jamie is working on an historic arson documentary and Cleo is busily making discoveries of her own along with her friend.  All four are living in a toxic household and getting on each other's last nerve.  Domestic tension is rife and written with believability.  

Mystery and Thriller/Suspense fans ought to prioritize this find.  Rosie Walker is...was...a new-to-me author and I am so glad to have discovered her and am inspired to read her Secrets of a Serial Killer.  

My sincere thank you to HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter and NetGalley for the privilege of reading this fiery and spirited book.
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The House Fire has an intriguing premise. Jamie Davidson wants to make a documentary about a series of unexplained fires that occurred in her hometown of Abbeywick In the 1980s. There was at least one victim from this arsonist that was never identified. Jamie begins working with her boyfriend on the filming but it seems she may be getting too close to the truth. History begins to repeat itself - another fire is set and Jamie and her younger sister, Cleo, may be in danger. There are a lot of twists throughout the book, and it’s impossible to figure out which characters are good and which are bad from one moment to the next. This makes it hard to find someone to root for since my opinions of the characters kept changing. 

The past and present fires are at the heart of the story, but the mystery of those crimes takes a backseat to domestic situations when Jamie’s boyfriend starts behaving in a scary way and Cleo is determined that her and Jamie’s new stepfather is emotionally abusing their mother. The theme of the books is the danger of unexpressed anger and some of the signs and effects of controlling behavior and emotional abuse. Although this is an important issue, it made for very tense and sometimes disturbing reading. I was expecting a thriller about an arsonist, but it was more a domestic drama that wasn’t always entertaining to read. Even with all the plot turns, I was able to put some of the clues together regarding  the fires, but the solution was complex and I was very surprised when the truth was revealed. The epilogue is well done and lets readers know what’s going on with the characters in an interesting way. The book isn’t what I thought it would be, but I would still rate it 3.5 stars. 

I received this ebook from NetGalley through the courtesy of One More Chapter. An advance copy was provided to me at no cost, but my review is voluntary and unbiased.
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I enjoyed The House Fire. I found it to be a solid story with enough twists and turns to keep me reading. I will definitely be looking out for more books by Rosie Walker in the future.

Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter for my ARC.
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Sadly this book didn't live up to its initial promise. The prologue was intriguing but then the rest of the book fell flat. Maybe just me but it felt more like a YA book that a thriller for adults. Very important topics raised in the book but didn't quite come off. Very slow going after the prologue and lots of jumping around. I did struggle to finish
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Sisters Cleo and Jamie and an arsonist tell this tale of twisted secrets.  Most of the story is told from teenaged Cleo's perspective.  She is unhappy at home, especially with her new step father (who is definitely creepy)..  Jamie is making a documentary about a spate of arsons in the 1980s- and now they've started up again.  Is she getting too close to the truth?  No spoilers from me.  This. moves around, a lot,, both in voice and in time period. I might be the odd one out but it didn't grab me as much as I'd hoped.  Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.
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This novel was absolutely brilliant up until the last 2 chapters.  It felt very rushed and a desperate attempt to throw in an unexpected plot twist.  There are so many loose ends the book leaves you feeling like you're missing a section. 

The book is still a great read, but I feel deflated after finishing it.
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I chose to read this book as it is a title which caught my eye due to the unusual subject material - you don't tend to come across many novels which feature house fires as their main content.  Intrigued, I dived in.
Sisters Jamie and Cleo are adjusting to life with a new stepdad. Cleo has taken an intense dislike to him however, being a few years older Jamie is doing her best to accept him into the family especially as he works in TV presenting and could be a useful contact for Jamie as she strives to become a documentary maker.
Jamie and her boyfriend Spider have plans to make a film about a series of cold case arsons which happened decades before but when the fires start up again things start to take a sinister turn. 
Evidence begins to come in which implies the arsonist could be much closer to home than any of them could have known but Jamie gets cold feet when anonymous threats are delivered to her home address warning her to back off. Stepdad Ant is pressuring Jamie's mum to send Cleo away to boarding school to try and calm her down and Spider is wanting to take the documentary in a completely different direction to the original plan. Who wants to take the focus away from the fires as the girls start to dig deeper into the unsolved cases? And why?
I really wanted to be gripped by this story but something was missing somewhere. What it is I still cannot put my finger on. There are red flags galore along the way, a stroppy teenager who will do anything to try and remove her stepdad from her family's lives, hints of domestic abuse and narcissistic behaviour but despite all this sense of mystery and threat I still didn't get hooked in completely.
The writing, characters and plot line are all very good and overall I didn't dislike the book but it just lacked the "X factor" for me. 
I wouldn't deter anyone from reading this novel though, I think it must just have been the wrong book at the wrong time for me personally.
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A tired old seaside town hiding a series of unsolved arson attacks. A derelict mansion in the woods with a long-buried secret. A bundle of old love letters that mask a dark story.

When Jamie's documentary investigation gets too close to uncovering the truth behind a series of deadly arson attacks that tormented Abbeywick in the 1980s. her family might be the ones that pay the price. But for her younger sister Cleo, the secrets Jamie uncovers have the potential to get exactly what Cleo wants: to remove her mums toxic new husband from their lives, forever.

This creepy thriller covers: fire, romance, manipulation and it's a tense read. This is one of those books that you're best going into blind. Jamie is making a documentary series about a string of arson attacks that had took place in her hometown, Abbeywick, in the 1980s. This is a gripping read that held my attention throughout.

I would like to thank #NetGalley #HarperCollinsUK #OneMoreChapter and the author #RosieWalker for my ARC of #TheHouseFire in exchange for an honest review.
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Thank you to the publishers and to Net Galley for a review copy.
I found this to be an interesting and thought-provoking book. The story follows the lives of the members of a family in which the mother has just remarried. The family now consists of the stepfather, an older daughter, and a rebellious early teens daughter who has taken a strong dislike to her stepfather.
Central to the story are a series of historic and current arson attacks being investigated by the elder daughter for a documentary film project and the attempts by the younger daughter to discredit her stepfather.
Coercive and controlling behaviors of several types and within more than one relationship are examined in detail.
Although I found this book interesting the ending was surprising and for me not convincing enough.
That being said the book is still well worth reading and other readers may have a different view to mine of the ending.
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A history of fires, arson attacks in the area where they live is the topic of the documentary that Jamie and her boyfriend Spider are making. The fires they are investigating happened a long time ago and all seemed to be connected until they suddenly stopped. Now someone’s starting fires again and with the funding from her mums new husband, Ant, Jamie thinks they can solve the mystery. 

When Jamie’s sister Cleo and her best friend Lucasz get involved by stumbling upon a house in the woods that’s been involved in an arson attack, they think they’ve found the culprit and Cleo is determined to bring that person down! 

I’ve really enjoyed this book. I can’t say I liked many of the characters if I’m being honest and I was screaming in my head at the girls mum to listen to Cleo. The story pulled me in from the get go and I immediately had to know who was starting the fires. I felt I knew quite early on who the arsonist was but I was totally wrong and man, what a twist. This is my first book by this author but I have one on my kindle that I will definitely be reading sooner rather than later.
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This is the 1st Book that I have read by the author and wow I loved the author style fo writing and now going to hunt down the rest of the author books as this one is so good, I could not put this book down and I won't ruin it with any spoilers but wow what a book , with thanks to the publisher and netgalley for the arc of this book
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Play with fire and you’ll get burned . . .
Who can you trust in this brand new edge-of-your-seat thriller?

A tired old seaside town hiding a series of unsolved arson attacks.

A derelict mansion in the woods with a long-buried secret.

A bundle of old love letters that mask a dark story. 

When Jamie's documentary investigation gets too close to uncovering the truth behind a series of deadly arson attacks that tormented Abbeywick in the 1980s, her family might be the ones who pay the price. 

But for her younger sister Cleo, the secrets Jamie uncovers have the potential to get exactly what Cleo wants: to remove her mum's toxic new husband from their lives, forever. 

All it takes is one spark to send everything up in smoke .
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An alarming prologue which had me intrigued.
An abandoned house, a step family wedding, documentary film making, fires and arson. attacks.  
Cleverly constructed and thought provoking.  It all nicely comes together, with a hopeful message of awareness as to what goes on behind doors.
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I started to read this book with high expectations but I simply lost interest, put it down and couldn't even remember what it was about when I went back to it.  I did wonder if I'd wandered into a young adult book by mistake but I simply couldn't raise the enthusiasm to finish it - and that is very rare for me.
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